Musings of a Reader: What Happened to Pakistani Television?

Published in Zau magazine in August 2015

As a principle, I am against the whole “things were so much better in the olden days” line of argument. I think it’s a lazy argument to make, and that nostalgia and distance inevitably make us believe that the past was better than it actually was. I usually roll my eyes when this line is thrown around during discussions of technology (“You kids with your smartphones and your Facebook – in MY day, we used to play out in the streets”) or the state of contemporary literature (“In the past, people read TRUE literature, not the Fifty Shades junk of today”). But just like rules are made to be broken, principles are made to have exceptions, and I, too, have an exception to my general aversion to romanticizing the past: I genuinely believe that the Pakistani dramas of the ‘70s and ‘80s are eons better than the crappy shows of today, with their one-note characters and their weepiness and their constant need to make a virtue out of suffering.

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Sexism in Literature

Quick, off the top of your head, name five books that have gotten critical acclaim recently. Chances are the books you’ve named are mostly those written by a male author. ‘But that’s just because I read genres that are more male-dominated,’ you might argue.

Or, ‘Well, men write better books than women.’ Such arguments are overly simplistic (not to mention misogynistic, in the case of the latter) and ignore the deep-rooted sexism that is prevalent in the world of literature today.

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