Basti by. Intizar Husain. general information | review summaries | our review Urdu title: بستى; Translated and with a Translator’s Note by Frances W. The central figure is Zakir, and the novel begins in his childhood, in the. This item:Basti (New York Review Books Classics) by Intizar Husain Paperback “Intizar Husain is the most important writer of fiction in Urdu, the strangely. In Urdu, basti means any space, from the most intimate to the most universal, translator notes at the close of the novel, Intizar Husain’s Basti is an imperfect.

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From then on I was unconcerned about the dust and ruts in the road, and about when the lorry would arrive in Rupnagar, and even about whether it would arrive at all Isn’t this the truth perfectly, how bwsti half-secret love can swallow your whole self, how some small touch, even a word, can obliterate time and dissolve every thought in your head Do check it out. If you are interested in South Asian history, and South Asian literary, this book is a must read.

An important step that now needs to be taken is ensuring that Basti turns into a vital part of English curricula across the spectrum of public and private educational institutions.

COVER STORY: Basti by Intizar Husain – Newspaper –

What “whens” and “whens” Bhagat-ji recalled, what “whens” and “whens” novell illumined in Abba Jan’s imagination! What tears them apart? Relatives move to town, and among them is young Sabirah, a girl whom Zakir befriends and who remains a constant though not a physical presence in his life.

But love is the bridge; friendship ignores religious differences and nation-state boundaries entirely. Zakir’s father is only absent for a single day from guarding the mosque, but when he returns the electricity has been hooked up, against his wishes; monkeys, too, are defeated by the high-power wires.

Raza Rumi is a writer and the director of Jinnah Institute, Islamabad. Apr 01, Kishwar Jaffer rated it liked it. There was a lot of brutality, misinformation, bias, bloodshed and upheaval from both events and no cathartic national process instead we just moved on a chose to believe the convenient truth which suited each side.

To ask other readers questions about Bastiplease sign up. This book is poignant and at times wrenching.


The characters wait for bzsti sign that minds and hearts may still meet. Rupagnar is abandoned, but remains the Zakir’s lost home; moving to a new ly created state demands new allegiances, yet Zakir always remains torn.

In Urdu, basti means any space, from the most intimate to the most universal, in which groups of people come together to try to live together, and the universal question at the heart of the book is how to constitute a common world.

But truth to tell, the man who blends the personal with the impersonal, specific with the universal, actually has the past much to thank for. Years following the ibtizar partition have had very similar effects on their characters.

Urdu Books of Intizar Hussain | Rekhta

This novel follows a young man from his childhood in pre-Partition India, to his first years in Pakistan following his family’s hovel, to the tumultuous years of war and the formation of Bangladesh.

Husain offers detailed and often dialogue-heavy scenes, but skips over great periods of time, in a novel that is more photograph album than a narrative focused on continuity.

So much the better, because that signals a start. I’m curious to read his other translated work. While the sentences swim in Urdu like fish in a sea, in English I want them at least to swim like fish in a well-designed aquarium. This madness has to stop, at some stage as cultures of the severed provinces are exactly the same.

Unfortunately that love never had the opportunity to develop and so there is an overwhelming sense of longing throughout the majority of this book. There is a lot unexplained and ugdu from the original partition and the separation of eastern – western Pakistan. No trivia or quizzes yet.

Anyway, I think that this novel should be part of the text books in Pakistan at least, so that the next generation can reflect back with good light. Sep 02, Tony rated it liked it Shelves: MarioLittle 29 July at I can only speak about the English translation and huusain read in a clean way, i. For instance in answer to a question that haunts an entire weary generation of post Pakistanis: Looking for More Great Reads? Please note that these ratings solely represent the complete review ‘s biased interpretation and subjective opinion of the actual reviews and do not claim to accurately reflect or represent the views of the reviewers.


Basti is a definite improvement. Instead, throughout the novel, there are threads of nostalgia, displacement and ruptured continuities. Dreamlike, evocative, tragic, all around excellent. My favourites were mostly in chapter 7: Finally some coherence returns when he hears from his friend Surendar in Delhi about Sabirah the one he loves.

I know who lied. The war threw the life of the city into hueain.

The answer is provided partly by Intizar sahab himself in a very useful interview with noted writer and translator, Asif Farrukhi, appended at the end of the novel. May 30, Farheen rated it really liked it. This book is about a boy, Zahir who moves from India to Pakistan leaving his love behind. I’m not sure if it was the style or the translation but I struggled to get into this.

In her introduction, she mentions the issues with the text, but she seldom falters on this account. Passerby stood bewildered, stared at the combatants with fright, then asked each other, “What’s happening?

Re-reading Basti many years after it was first published, I was reminded yet again of these lines by W. BOTH decision and timing are scarcely believable and will surely give more ammunition to those quarters denouncing We don’t hear news, only that the beloved one reads it, or that it is discussed by friends in the cafe I suppose that was deliberate in terms of depicting how we experience thought and memory but it made for a novle slow read in parts.

Translation of celebrated Urdu novel Basti reveals search for a homeland

Urud year turns everything topsy-turvy, and more so, it transforms the fate of the basti settlement. Written by, apparently, modern Urdu’s most beloved novelist, Basti is a dream of Pakistan, from it’s bloody birth in partition to the war which gave birth to Bangladesh. Historical Fiction Spiritual Fiction.

I didn’t connect untizar the novel even though I find the subject matter very interesting Partition and its aftermath. There were, however, some be A short story about the partition and the waiting for war.