Discontent and Its Civilizations

Discontent and Its Civilizations

Dispatches From Lahore, New York, and London

Book - 2015
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"From the bestselling author of How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia, an intimate and sharply observed commentary-in-essays on life, art, politics, and "the war on terror."--Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York :, Riverhead Books,, 2015
ISBN: 9781594633652
Branch Call Number: ANF 814.6 HAM
Characteristics: 226 pages ; 21 cm
Additional Contributors: Hamid, Mohsin 1971-- Author

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shayshortt
Aug 04, 2016

“Recently I met a woman visiting Lahore from Hong Kong. Friends of hers abroad asked her why she was traveling to such a troubled country. She said it was like visiting a loved one when they were sick. No one relishes exposing themselves to illness, but when a parent or sibling is unwell, human instinct is to be with them until they recover. Pakistan is feverish these days. But I find much to admire and keep me here, and I hope for the sake of my daughter’s generation that one day soon the fever will break.”

s
shayshortt
Aug 04, 2016

“Hybrids do more than embody mixtures between groups. Hybrids reveal the boundaries between groups to be false.”

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shayshortt
Aug 04, 2016

“People often ask me if I am the book’s Pakistani protagonist. I wonder why they never ask if I am his American listener. After all, a novel can be a divided man’s conversation with himself.”

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shayshortt
Aug 04, 2016

Thematically, the book addresses the liminality of being from many places and nowhere at the same time. Hamid has lived at various times in Lahore, New York, and London, as he is of all of them, and none of them. The tension is heightened by the ongoing disagreements between the West and Islam, and Hamid finds himself cast as an unlikely interpreter between the two. While there are a few essays from the turn of the millennium, most of this work addresses a post-9/11 world. Many of the pieces first appeared in The New York Times, but others were published in Pakistani magazines or Indian newspapers so that we see Hamid speaking explicitly to both sides. The pieces range widely, but it is to this interpretive role that he returns again and again. In the end, you will know a bit about him as a person and as a writer, and how these identities have informed his view of the world. Full review: https://shayshortt.com/2016/08/04/discontent-and-its-civilizations/

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shayshortt
Aug 04, 2016

Discontent and Its Civilizations is a collection of essays spanning the past fifteen years by globe-trotting novelist Mohsin Hamid. Born in Pakistan, he spent his childhood in California, his teen years in Lahore, and returned to America to study first at Princeton, and then Harvard Law School. When the twin towers fell on 9/11, he had just moved from New York to London. The essays are divided into three sections entitled “Life,” “Art,” and “Politics,” but of course the three are inextricably bound.

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