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The Nehru Memorial Museum & Library


‘Public Making: Dictatorship, eros and an Urdu woman poet’, 3rd March, 2015.

‘Public Making: Dictatorship, eros and an Urdu woman poet’

Dr. Shad Naved,


This presentation is part of a larger project studying Oriental poetries, the ghazal in particular, as a historical formation. In this talk the speaker looks at the poetic function of the ghazal universe in Urdu, an erotic universe in its themes and moods, as it formulates and reflects upon the meaning and scope of state, society and culture as categories not just contested socially, but also in the imagination, in postcolonial South Asia. What are the positions from which such imaginations become coherent and even dominant? How do such old aesthetic practices interact with social processes and upheavals? In this talk the case study will be the short career of a woman ghazal poet writing under the formal constraints of dictatorship.


Dr. Shad Naved is currently a Junior Fellow at the Nehru Memorial Museum and Library, New Delhi. He has completed a Comparative Literature PhD on the Urdu ghazal and related poetic milieus, from the University of California, Los Angeles. Most recently he taught in the Gender Studies Programme, Ambedkar University, Delhi.

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