This extract from Dispatches from Pakistan (LeftWord, 2012) edited by Vijay Prashad, Madiha R. Tahir, and Qalandar Bux Memon, traces the emergence of Imran Khan in Pakistan and the politics of Pakistan’s populism. A must-read primer on the social history of transformation underway in Pakistan.
The iconic image of Imran Khan – the one everyone still remembers – is the photograph of him wearing a lime-green uniform and holding the 1992 World Cup trophy aloft, arms above his head and [...]
Aijaz Ahmad's most celebrated book is In Theory: Classes, Nations, Literatures. It is, somewhat surprisingly, the only book he wrote. He published four other books which are all collections of essays (one of which, Lineages of the Present, appeared in two editions with somewhat differing tables of contents), three books where he is credited as editor or co-editor, and one book of edited conversations. For an intellectual with a wide international appeal and influence, this is paltry output.
Aijaz Ahmad (1941-2022) died at home on March 9, surrounded by his books and papers, and by the warmth of his children and his friends.
Born in Muzaffarnagar, in British India, Aijaz read extensively from an early age and allowed his mind to drift out of the qasba of his childhood. His father shared some radical books with him, which helped him to understand the world outside the doab region of the Indo-Gangetic Plain and the world beyond the confines of the capitalist system. From an early age[...]
In 1999, Fidel Castro of Cuba travelled to Caracas, Venezuela, to deliver an important speech at the central university. The USSR had collapsed, Fidel said, and the 'extremely powerful empire', the United States and its global tentacles, mounted a 'ceaseless ideological battle with all their resources'. Structures of globalisation weakened the national projects of many states, whose agendas were increasingly set by the International Monetary Fund and by transnational corporations. We are a 'pe[...]