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Book Launch: Sarmad Sehbai's آڑے ترچھے آئینے

Friday, November 12, 2021 | 4:00 PM | Online on Zoom

Bilal Tanweer in Conversation with Sarmad Sehbai

Guest Speakers: Madeeha Hanif and Usman Peerzada

Published by the GCLL, Āṛē Tirčẖē Ā’īnē is a compilation of six Urdu and three Punjabi plays written by the dramatist Sarmad Sehbai. The anthology echoes Sehbai’s linguistic command, not only on Urdu but also on Punjabi, through the usage of wit within urban speech. The collection strongly echoes the writer’s forte—his strength in drawing attention to the sharp edges of his readers' usual mundane selves that slash others knowing or unknowingly while tactfully evoking the desire to challenge these norms. This book was edited by Muhammad Naveed and was published in November 2020 by the Gurmani Centre for Languages and Literature, LUMS.

The launch was hosted by Bilal Tanweer with Madeeha Hanif and Usman Peerzada as guest speakers to celebrate an important milestone in Sehbai’s career. The inauguration emphasized the importance of classifying drama as an equally important and prestigious genre as the others in Urdu literature; it should not be overlooked or marginalized and is seamlessly encouraged to take the shape of a published book.

Sarmad Sehbai rose to prominence as a playwright during the 1970s. While his earlier creative endeavors revolved around writing poetry, today Sehbai is an acclaimed playwright, poet and filmmaker. His work derives extraordinary lessons from ordinary life, based on the nuances of the post-colonial era, split between the past and the present. Inspired by existentialism and Marxist philosophy, Sehbai’s criticism of colonialism features strongly in some of his dramas where he advocates the necessity to break free from its shackles.

“Sarmad imperceptibly makes full use of wit that underpins the idiom of language evolved by cheerful and self-mocking Punjabi temperament over thousands of years.” —Mushtaq Soofi, Dawn

“Sarmad Sehbai’s Aarhay Terchay Aainay explores his journey of becoming an acclaimed playwright.” —Sarwat Ali, The News


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