ERŠĀD al-NESWĀN, the first women’s periodical in Afghanistan, published weekly in Kabul from 27 Ḥūt 1299 to 19 Ṯawr 1300 (16 March-9 June 1921). The editor was Asmār Sommayya, the Syrian wife of Maḥmūd Ṭarzˊī, the famous Afghan politician, poet, and journalist. Since Somayya did not know Persian, another woman of the Ṭarzī family, Rūḥafzā, was managing editor, and both were listed on the masthead (as “A-R” and “R-A”). In all probability, Maḥmūd Ṭarzī, at that time foreign minister, played a large role in determining the contents.

Eršād al-neswān was lithographed in nastaʿlīq script ineight pages (three columns, 25 x 37.5 cm, through no. 11, and later eight pages, two columns, 22.5 x 27.5 cm) and carried no illustrations. Single issues were sold at 5 Kabul rupees within Afghanistan and 7 elsewhere. Copies are kept at Kabul University.



M. K. Āhang, Sayr-e žūrnālīsm dar Afḡānestān, Kabul, 1349 Š./1970, pp. 167-72.

V. Gregorian, The Emergence of Modern Afghanistan, Stanford, 1969, p. 244.

ʿA.-A. Ṣāber and ʿA. Mardomī, Rāhnomā-ye majallāt, jarāyed o rūz-nāmahā-ye Afḡānestān, Kabul, 1356 Š./1977, p. 86.

Sāl-nāma-ye Kābol, 1311 Š./1932, p. 153.

M. Sarvar-e Jūyā, “Maṭbūʿāt o našrīyāt-e mā,” Majalla-ye Kābol 2/4, 1311 Š./1932, p. 70.

(Nassereddin Parvin)

Originally Published: December 15, 1998

Last Updated: January 19, 2012

This article is available in print.
Vol. VIII, Fasc. 5, p. 560