MAPPING THE CONTOURS OF INDIGENOUS WOMEN SUBALTERNITY IN NADEEM ASLAM’S SELECTED NOVELS


Nadeem Aslam, the Pakistani-born English writer, has penned-down five novels so far and in every novel, he mirrors the social problems of women whether residing in the country or abroad and the multiple factors leading to their subjugation and subalternity. He portrays the dilemma and socio-physical condition in three distinct geographical contexts of war torn Talibanized Afghanistan, war effected semi-rural areas of Pakistan and women of Pakistani origin settled in England. These variegated socio-cultural and geographical settings provide us the chance to explore a huge range of women behaviour and the multiple factors leading to their subjugation and subalternity. The aim of this research is to identify and analyse the subalterned, hybrid, marginalized and downtrodden conditions of Pak-Afghan women through the trajectories of ingrained patriarchal traditions, misuse of religion, Honour killing, sexual harassment, sexual abuse, marriage without consent, male chauvinism, financial exploitation, psychological and emotional trauma and physicalviolence. This research also explores the role elderly women themselves play in perpetuating the structures of gender exploitations by suppressing sometimes their younger counterparts. The significance of such a research cannot be overlooked in the current scenario of worldwide implications of ongoing proxy wars and extremism where most of the time, emotions and personal motives overcome logic and reality. To map a vivid understanding, this multi-diciplinary research will be based on various theorists like Homi K. Bhabha, William Henry Hudson, Louis Althusser and Gramsci. The data used for this research can be majorly classified as primary data and secondary data. The primary data sources of the study are the three novels of Nadeem Aslam which include “Maps for Lost Lovers” (2004), “The Wasted Vigil” (2008) and “The Blind Man’s Garden” (2013). Secondary data sources include the supporting material taken from literary books, some related articles, newspapers, the Holy Quran and Ahadith. Qualitative research and descriptive research methods are adopted to compare and contrast the depiction of the subalternity issue as presented by Aslam and other contemporary novelists.


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