This article examines the poetry of a contemporary feminist poet from Pakistan, Kishwar Naheed (b. 1940). Using Michel Foucault's later writings, I look at the possibility of reading Naheed's poetry as acts of parrhesia where her aesthetic self merges with an ethical voice to create a literature of resistance against laws of patriarchy and the nation-state. I demonstrate how Naheed reshapes the positionality of the poetic "I" and, in the process, transforms poetry-writing into an act of "truthtelling" by creating an assemblage of dialogic voices. I further discuss how Naheed uses this poetic assemblage to specifically challenge the Islamization of Pakistan's legal system under the dictatorship of General Zia-ul-Haq (1977-1988). Finally, I theorize feminist poetry from Pakistan as a discursive "game" of vacillitating truths and desires that women poets like Naheed employ to weave together issues of collective identity and individual performativity through intersecting narratives of gender, religion, and nation.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||19|
|Journal||Forum for World Literature Studies|
|State||Published - Dec 1 2014|
- Kishwar Naheed
- Urdu Poetry
- Zina Ordinance