Familiar renditions of Pakistan’s early history emphasize how the bureaucracy’s alignment with the military effectively sidelined all other political forces and was in control of the state machinery. What is often missed in this narrative is how the new country struggled in its founding moments to find the ideological and cultural basis for its creation and existence. The discussions, disagreements, apprehensions and conflicts over what should pass as “authentic” Pakistani culture is a continuing story of various twists and turns.
Join us at t2f for sketches of the early years of Pakistan’s communist movement, the history of the left, and how “progressives”, “intellectuals”, and “revolutionaries” such as Faiz Ahmed Faiz, Sibte Hasan, Sajjad Zaheer, Hasan Askari, Saadat Hasan Manto, and N.M. Rashid contributed to “Pakistaniat”.
Kamran Asdar Ali, Associate Professor of Anthropology and Middle East Studies at the University of Texas-Austin, will present his views, followed by a discussion on Pakistan’s other histories, the role of the left, and the open question of Pakistani culture.
Date: Wednesday 2nd January, 2008