Thursday, March 29, 2012

Daughters of Afghanistan: Literary Voices of Change

Every one calls you to his own / I call you only to yourself --Rumi

"Classical Persian verse constantly evokes Afghanistan and its glorious history. Poets such as Rumi (from Balkh), Sanai (from Ghazni), and Jami (from Ghor) are still celebrated today. In the province of Balkh alone, there are several literary groups that serve poets and poetry enthusiasts alike, including the Partow Cultural Foundation, the Poets and Writers Organization of Balkh, and the Parwaz Literary Association. Zuzanna Olszewska, a translator of contemporary Afghan verse, writes that "poetry composition and recitation has been and continues to be the most highly prized and widely practiced art form among Afghans of all walks of life, both literate and illiterate." Honoring and emulating the traditions of their culture, young Afghans are establishing their own distinct voices.

Contemporary Afghan poetry reflects the country's sociopolitical circumstances. It echoes the anxieties and realities of a postwar society and the ambitions and aspirations of a generation that attempts to follow the world in the midst of a long, violent struggle colored by religious fanaticism and foreign occupation. Verse after verse, the quest for human dignity and long-enduring peace is heartfelt...."

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Tag: Poetry, Afghan voices

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