Matter of fact, survival is the sole aim of life in that rugged, uncompromising highland; and the tribesmen ask for no more. Sidhwa beckons us deep into the primitive hills of Kohistan, then to bazaar-spiced Lahore at the crisis of Partition. One autobiography written as a response to Nutuk was by a prolific woman writer and political figure, who, at the time Nutuk was delivered, was, with her second husband Dr. She is married and her husband, though a virile and handsome young man, starts treating her cruelly like some inferior being and beating her on the slightest excuse. It is the animosity and brutality that male dominance pose before women. Delivered by Mustafa Kemal over six days for a duration of thirty-six hours and thirty-one minutes October 15—20, 1927 , Nutuk described the heroic accounts of the Independence Struggle of Turkey against the Allies 1919—1922 , particularly the military leadership of Mustafa Kemal during the Struggle, with much hyperbole. Speaking of the east-west encounter Meenakshi Mukherji observes: In some novels, the west appears as a character, in some others as an attitude or a set of values.
The story is about a young girl, zaitoon, who finds herself trapped in an arranged marriage to a person from the mountains, and of a vastly different culture from her own. Such figures included former leaders of the Terakkiperver Cumhuriyet Fırkası Progressive Republican Party , the opposition party to the Republican People's Party, such as Kazım Karabekir, Ali Fuat Cebesoy, Refet Bele, Caffer Tayyar Egilmez, Hüseyin Rauf Orbay, and Dr. The story is about a young girl, zaitoon, who finds herself trapped in an arranged marriage to a person from the mountains, and of a vastly different culture from her own. I have been traveling to Gilgit and Hunza through Kohistan and I am always blown away by the horrific stories these mesmerizing mountains hide within. Approached on a level other than that of logical causality, the story appears to have an inner coherence not previously appreciated.
But after about ten years, Qasim decides she should marry someone from the beautiful mountains of his youth. Qasim, conspicuous as a mountain-man anywhere in Lahore, looked curiously unlike one when facing the stranger. Nevertheless, it was a beautiful, haunting, tragic tale which is very telling of the expected roles of men and women in that part of the world, and how going against tradition is synonymous with extreme danger. While this novel is set in the years following shortly after the Partition of India and Pakistan and centred around Qasim a Kohistanti man and his Wow! Zaitoon decides to escape; it takes her nine days of tortuous trek through the mountains to reach the camp of the Pakistan army engaged on the road. In this book she talks about social ethos of Pakistani marital life by citing her own marriage as an example. Grappling with her own confusion and insecurities she looks down upon Pakistani women and regards Pakistan as a place that requires her to save it.
Sidhwa draws the reader into Pakistan and its peculiar -- and yet universal -- problems. While the privileged women of the continent got into limelight by means of their writings, women belonging to third world still had their voice unheard. Although she is but a graduate from the Punjab University, Sidhwa has taught creative writing at several seats of learning, including Columbia, Rice and Houston, a clear recognition of her attainments as a writer. Impulsively, Qasim promises his daughter in marriage to a tribesman, but Zaitoon's fantasy soon becomes a grim reality of unquestioning obedience and unending labor. Carol, the young, unhappy American wife of a Pakistani businessman.
It is so interesting especially the character of the young girl. What keeps this novel from being thoroughly captivating is, in fact, its attempt to teach a lesson. To deny what goes on in these areas of Pakistan simply because one belongs to a privileged strata of society does not make the issues faced by these 'others' disappear. The responsibilities of a family led her to conceal her literary prowess. A great highway is being built through the mountains and change is afoot.
Easygoing style making this a quick read. Sidhwa walks between the Pakistani and Western worlds, casting light on an often misunderstood and neglected region, revealing the human perspective there. I was looking something covering a wider swath of the country written through the eyes of a Pakistani. Major half of the story is wasted in building plot and the real story starts not until last third of the book. The men in the bazaar picked their teeth laughed indulgently. The story line was good and it had lots of potential but unfortunately, Sidhwa's prose was descriptive and short.
Zaitoon, an orphan, is adopted by Qasim, who has left the isolated hill town where he was born and made a home for the two of them in the glittering, decadent city of Lahore. Increasingly getting nostalgic about his life in mountains, Qasim promises Zaitoon that he will marry her off to a boy from his own clan. One hopes that there will be many more novels from the pen of this most sensitive writer. Sidhwa first wrote a couple of short articles about the beauty of the Karakoram mountains. The novels strongly comments about the influence of cultural conflicts and its impact on the social order.
But what this book tries to show is nowhere near that. The only thing I wish was different, was that the first several chapters are not about Zaitoon, so the connection the reader develops, could have been further enhanced if more pages had been dedicated to her character building. The process was so discouraging that Sidhwa stopped writing for about five years. When Zaitoon reaches marriageable age, Quasim, in a fit of bucolic nostalgia, decides to marry her to a man of his tribe in the mountains. Bapsi Sidhwa began her writing career at the age of 26 after visiting the Karakoram mountain-area of Pakistan with her husband. Upon losing his family to a smallpox epidemic, he moves away in despair to the Punjab region of Pakistan, where he comes across an orphan child, Zaitoon. Henke will prove in the body of her text that the doctor-patient scenario is not the only method for working through trauma.