Writing Partition: Aesthetics and Ideology in Hindi and Urdu Literature
In Writing Partition: Aesthetics and Ideology in Hindi and Urdu Literature, Bodh Prakash examines the... more
In Writing Partition: Aesthetics and Ideology in Hindi and Urdu Literature, Bodh Prakash examines the shifts in literary modes as a reflection of the changes in post-Partition society. He argues that the 1950s, the period during which Hindi and Urdu fiction began to evince a distinctly modernist sensibility, signified the phase when people began to assess the impact of Partition on their lives. While progressive writers had articulated their social and political concerns through realism, modernism became the preferred mode through which issues of identity, alienation and rootlessness were explored by others. Through an insightful, comprehensive study of the rich corpus of Partition fiction, Prakash shows that the short stories and novels that were written during the second half of the twentieth century began to pose existential questions through dislocated characters and fragmented societies. Prakash also shows how, on the one hand, the secular humanist consensus continued to register its presence in both progressive realist and modernist narratives of Partition; and, on the other, a new Pakistani identity was sought to be created by repositioning Partition as the realization of a long-cherished dream within a continuous history of Islam.