The Devolution of Heroines in Pakistani TV Dramas, Changing Perceptions of Urdu, and More With Dr. Amina Yaqin

Jun 26, 2023


In this episode, Urdu and Postcolonial Studies reader Dr. Amina Yaqin talks about Pakistani TV shows, female readership  of  Urdu novels in the 19th century, and understanding women’s life narratives through autobiographies.

‘In Perspective’ is The Swaddle’s podcast series where academics reveal little-known facts about Indian history, society and culture. 


00:01:16:22- Why is Urdu perceived as a sectarian language of Indian Muslims today? In what ways has this increased communalization of the language post Partition been documented in Indian literature? 

00:18:30:10- What led to the growth of the Urdu novel in the Indian subcontinent in the 19th century? How did it enable a fusion of narrative traditions of the East and West?

00:43:41:14- Why are autobiographies largely looked at as a man’s domain? What makes it a particularly interesting genre from the perspective of women’s history and women documenting their own stories?

00:59:11:21- Today’s Pakistani dramas are hugely popular in India and many parts of the world. But in what ways has there been a shift in the portrayal of women in these dramas, from the assertive, liberal heroines of the 1980s to what you describe as “cautiously modern women” who are good wives and sisters in contemporary soap operas?

01:17:00:04- How have contemporary Urdu writers in Pakistan explored narratives of gender and sexuality in subversive ways?


The latest in health, gender & culture in India -- and why it matters. Delivered to your inbox weekly.