A Person of Pakistani Origin
What does it mean to be a Pakistani? When people think they see one, what are they seeing? Can a Pakistani be more than one thing?
In A Person of Pakistani Origin, Ziauddin Sardar, who does not have an authentic birth certificate to prove his origins, seeks to discover what makes a Pakistani, and whether it is something one wants or ought to be. He reflects on his culture and heritage through the stories of the Pakistanis in his life. These are tales of duelling poets, fake thrillers, an uncle who has the ability to disappear and reappear miles away without breaking a sweat, a traditional bookish auntie who harbours feminist desires, and a culture deeply entangled in Bollywood films. Nothing is as it seems, and assumptions made serve only as lessons for tomorrow.
Contemplative and generously laced with humour, this book takes the reader deep into Pakistan’s eclectic culture, the beauty of Urdu, and the humble insanity of everyday life for a person of Pakistani origin. The reader emerges with a sharper sense of the importance of where one comes from, and who one has become.
Ziauddin Sardar is an award-winning, internationally renowned writer, futurist and cultural critic. A former New Statesman columnist and Equality and Human Rights Commissioner, he has authored many books, including Desperately Seeking Paradise: Journeys of a Sceptical Muslim; Reading the Qur'an; and Mecca: The Sacred City. He is editor of the influential quarterly, Critical Muslim.