BS (Social Sciences & Liberal Arts)

Faculty / School

School of Economics and Social Sciences (SESS)


Department of Social Sciences & Liberal Arts

Date of Award

Spring 2022

Date of Submission



Zainab Tariq, Lecturer, Department of Social Sciences

Project Type

SSLA Culminating Experience

Access Type

Restricted Access


This study’s research question examined the impact of epilepsy-related stigma on the life of women with epilepsy (WWE) in Pakistan, using interviews with WWE and family members. Additionally, it answers the question of how stigma impacts an individual’s identity-formation by autoethnography. Since previous literature on the topic suggests that women experience stigma differently, this study focused on women’s experiences with epilepsy and stigmatization. Participants were recruited through posts made on social media platforms; they were informed of the ethical concerns of participation as soon as contact was established. Consent was obtained using IBA’s SESS consent form. Due to the way epilepsy-related stigma has operated in my life i.e.: in secrecy, I hypothesized that overt epilepsy-related stigma and discrimination will not be observed within the study’s interviews. However, there will be high levels of disclosure stigma and stigma potential. Both concepts refer to an individual’s reluctance to share certain information publicly for fear/expectation of negative treatment upon revelation. The results of the study are understood using two theoretical frameworks. First, modified labeling theory (MLT) is used to understand the findings from the sociological perspective. Second, James Marcia’s theory of identity development is used to address its results from the psychological perspective. The hypothesis held true in the case of this study’s participants, however future research with greater sample sizes is needed to make the results generalizable.


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