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Lying Down to Die: Breaking the Mould

Agaoglu's Lying Down to Die (1973) fictionalizes the early decades of the new Turkish Republic through Aysel and her classmates. It offers a comprehensive context to explore the identity formation processes for women against the background of the modernizing project in a conservative context. In two and a half hours in a hotel room, her attempts to trace her past acts as a purgation process in which she discovers her bodily self, which she has suppressed in her efforts to build up her "imagined" identity. This essay aims to explore Aysel's purgation process with references to the social context within which she was raised.