Pakistani literature has seen a burgeoning of fiction in English in the past decade. These texts are typically historical and realist, seeking to work through postcolonial paradigms via diegetic constructions; characters that are representative of the state, protagonists that are liminal figures in the strata of culture being depicted, or even narrative representations of historical figures. The usefulness of narrative in attempting to exact political critique, however, seems to be incomplete.
In Cairo, instead of the usual tourist souvenir of a pendant with your name in Arabic or hieroglyphs, I asked the jeweler for this Punjabi verse in shahmukhi script same as Arabic to be carved on a silver bracelet: m ayey ni mein kino akha O Mother, whom can I tell? I wore the verse on my wrist throughout the year in Cairo, and during the following two years studying at a writing program in Oregon, USA. I lost the bracelet at the end of my first marriage. Fifteen years later, after two divorces and a decade-long sojourn in New York City, I stood holding rose garlands at the shrine of the 16 th century poet- saint, Shah Hussein , the author of my bracelet verse. Oh, you mean Madhoo Lal Hussein? I was politely reminded by the driver that the poet saint is better known by the name of his lover, Madhoo Lal. Women are not allowed beyond this point, warns the sign at the steps leading to the inner sanctum where the graves of the saint and his lover are located.
Anglotopia’s Top 100 Favorite British Slang Words and Phrases
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I t's been more than a decade since the Ayub Khan-Din-scripted East Is East liberated British-Asian cinema from the furrowed-brow earnestness that had largely been its lot. It managed to combine an effervescent cheerfulness with simple but effective points about how ethnic identity changes across successive generations of immigrants. No doubt with one eye on current political debate, this belated sequel looks to develop the theme and provide context to the arguments about immigration.