Negotiating Conflict: Regional and National Identities in Contemporary Pakistani Fiction in English

  • Syed Hanif Rasool, Dr. Assistant Professor, Department of English, Khushal Khattak University, Karak, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

Abstract

Pakistan has frequently been viewed as a stronghold of Islamic radicals, often overlooking the fact that various trends of both dormant and obvious conflicts exist between the politics of religion and region. Whereas the former is mainly controlled by the state, the latter is generally influenced by language and ethnicity. The state’s monolithic notion of national identity, from the country’s birth in 1947 to the present, has overshadowed the regional identities mainly the Pashtuns, Baluchis, and Sindhis, and disregarded the minority credos such as Shias, Parsis, Ahmadis, Hindus, and Christians. The present article aims to explore how contemporary Pakistani fiction in English spotlights images of a fragmented national self, underlining plights of the aforementioned marginal groups and exhibiting strong resistance to hidebound national identity. Reviewing contemporary Pakistani fiction in English with a particular focus on the fiction of Bapsi Sidhwa, Sara Suleri, Kamila Shamsie, Nadeem Aslam, Bina Shah, and Jamil Ahmad, this paper aims to bring critical attention of the scholars to the socio-cultural and political valuation of the regional identities.


Keywords: regional identities, fragmented national-self, prevailing power discourses, contemporary Pakistani fiction in English (CPFE), subversive

Published
2021-09-30
How to Cite
RASOOL, Syed Hanif. Negotiating Conflict: Regional and National Identities in Contemporary Pakistani Fiction in English. University of Chitral Journal of Linguistics & Literature, [S.l.], v. 5, n. I, p. 1-13, sep. 2021. ISSN 2663-1512. Available at: <https://jll.uoch.edu.pk/index.php/journal10/article/view/262>. Date accessed: 19 jan. 2022. doi: https://doi.org/10.33195/jll.v5iI.262.