Agency, gender, nationalism, and the romantic imaginary in Pakistan

Authored by: Abu-Bakar Ali

The Routledge Companion to Pakistani Anglophone Writing

Print publication date:  September  2018
Online publication date:  October  2018

Print ISBN: 9781138745520
eBook ISBN: 9781315180618
Adobe ISBN:


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The discourse of romance has become synonymous with popular, mass-media culture in Pakistan and shaped its many diverse forms, from iconic television drama serials to novels that are part of a wider literary history. This chapter explores how the genre of romance can potentially serve as a site in which Pakistani women writers refashion and reconfigure their role in their country’s nationalist imaginary. Nationalism and its ideologies are clearly important to these writers and I am concerned with the way they respond to its challenges and the subsequent implications this has for gendered agency.

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