Dispatches from Pakistan
Writing about pakistan is cliché-ridden. Fear is the dominant motif: mullahs,terrorists,nuclear bombs. And beneath that is victimhood: refuges from floods and military adventures,women in burqas, emaciated children. Littile of the actual fabric of everyday life comes across. Nothing of the struggles against neoliberalism, nothing of the struggles against the kleptocracy of miltary, Inc. Nothing of the searing poetry from Gilgit,nothing of the graffiti from Gwadar. Pakistanis are alive. Sold by governments who should save them, killed by secret agencies who should guard them, bombed by American drones, ‘structurally adjusted ’ into starvation, beaten, rendered, tortured and disappeared, and yet, inscrutably, immutably, even joyously, they are still alive.
Dispatches from Pakistan is an introduction to that liveliness, with sixteen original essays that take us from Balochistan to Baltistan, and poetry from Jalib and Riyaz. This collection is essential reading for anyone who is invested in the social history of transformation underway in Pakistan. With shrewd analysis rendered in accessible language, Dispatches lays plain the complex and vitally important conditions unfolding in 21st-century Pakistan.
"The book is a valuable contribution to the understanding of a troubled country from well-known writers and journalists who have travelled and experienced first-hand many of the ominous developments." — The Hindu
"This book is a collection of some of the best research papers on Pakistan in recent times." — Daily Times Pakistan
"Unlike most recent books on Pakistan, Dispatches... doesn't predict a collapse of the state. Rather, its focus is on Pakistan's survival potential." — Business Standard
"[F]antastic and serves as an antidote to much of the news coming out of Pakistan." — Irtiqa blog