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Literature & Art: The Afghan Perspective (Session 1)

Friday, October 15, 2021 | 4:00 PM | Online on Zoom

Literature & Art: The Afghan Perspective

The focus for the Halqa-e-Danish series in Fall 2021 was on the Afghan perspective through the exploration and study of Dari and Pashto literary works. The need for giving a platform to such works is brought by the incessant and over-repetitive biased coverage of the Afghan situation by the western media that caused the native Afghan voice to completely fade in the background.

Session 1: Contemporary Afghan Pashto-Dari Short Stories

Speakers: Dr. Akhlaq Ahmad Ahan and Dr. Abdul Khaliq Rashid

Moderator: Dr. Fatima Fayyaz

The speakers included Dr. Akhlaq Ahmad Ahan from New Dehli, and Dr. Abdul Khaliq Rashid from Kabul, who have collaborated on a publication featuring Hindi and Urdu translations of Afghan short stories in Dari-Pashto. They explained the origins of the Pashto short story in Afghanistan, tracing it back to 1907 when Rahat Zakheli penned the first one, while Dari, which is a mostly unread and marginalized language, known only to a few gained prominence due to Abdul Qadir’s short story Tasveer-e-Ibrat, written in 1912. Dr. Ahan and Dr. Rashid discussed the evolution of contemporary Afghan storytelling and its significance in helping its writers process the trauma of dissent caused by war over the past several decades. The study of Dari and Pashto literary works is an effort made by the Gurmani Centre to create a channel through which art can serve as a glimpse into the lives of its people.

Dr. Akhlaq Ahmad Ahan is a Professor of Persian language & literature at the Centre of Persian & Central Asian Studies, Jawahar Lal Nehru University, New Dehli, India.

Dr. Abdul Khaliq Rashid is a serving Professor at the University of Kabul and is associated with the JNU, New Dehli, as Visiting Faculty.

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