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Khayāl-o-Nazar kā Silsilā

(A Chain of Thoughts & Vision)

The Gurmani Centre podcasts showcase the diversity of languages and literature and provide insights into the cultural, academic, historical, and literary significance of these works.

Podcasts are a popular contemporary medium of communication, especially since the audio format provides an opportunity for people to engage with content on-the-go, also allowing for a more intimate and personal connection between speakers and the audience, recreating the experience of an actual conversation. A welcome change from the homogeneity of traditional media, podcasts have democratized the media industry and have led to a diverse range of voices and perspectives being represented.


In the context of the Gurmani Centre for Language and Literature, our podcast has become an effective medium to share literary and linguistic content. It is now a platform for authors, poets, literature buffs, creative spirits, critics, and linguists to discuss their work and ideas, and to share their interests and knowledge with a wider audience. The Gurmani Centre podcasts showcase the diversity of languages and literature and provide insights into the cultural, academic, historical, and literary significance of these works.

The podcasts featuring on our website have surfaced as a valuable addition to the Gurmani Centre's online presence, helping to create a sense of community. Regular listeners, both intra muros or otherwise, at LUMS and beyond, can feel like they are part of the conversations that we initiate, and foster a deeper engagement with the Centre's undertakings and activities

Naye Naqqād ke Nām Khutūt by Nasir Abbas Nayyar 
(book review)

Nasir Abbas Nayyar is a prolific Urdu literary critic. His topics of interest are Post-Colonialism, Structuralism, Post-Modernism, and Poetry. He has also penned a collection of short stories named Rākh se Likkhī Ga’ī Kitāb. Naye Naqqād ke Nām Khutūt is a collection of literary essays in Urdu. These essays have been written in the form of letters. Nasir Abbas Nayyar gives the following reason for incorporating this writing style in his essays: “The technique of letter allows the presentation of ideas with a greater intimacy and affection that essays or articles cannot afford.” For this reason, great authors such as Al-Ghazālī and Rainer Maria Rilke have also made use of this style in their writings. Nasir Abbas Nayyar confesses that while writing this book, he had Rainer Maria Rilke’s Letters to a Young Poet in his unconscious. Naye Naqqād ke Nām Khutūt is written in the same format that Rilke’s Letters to a Young Poet was written. In addition, each letter in the book is appended with excerpts from global literature translated into Urdu, and each letter has a corresponding illustration on its initial page.

Takriban by Ahmad Javaid 
(book review)

Gurmani Centre presents its new podcast on the poetry collection of Ahmed Javaid, namely “Takriban,” wherein students converse about the literary style and prowess of Ahmed Javaid's poetry. They cherishingly recite and discuss couplets and poems from the collection amidst their busy class schedules.

Ahmed Javaid is a public intellectual, a renowned scholar, a poet, a philosopher, and a literary critic. He was born in 1948. It would not be an overstatement to call him the Patron Saint of many lost traditions that belong to our sub-continental history, literary as well as mystical and religious. He has written in a plethora of genres. His published works include poetry, short stories, translations, literary criticism, writings on social and religious issues, and even hymns and supplications. A few of these works include *Manājāt, Islāhi Bātain, Āndhi ka Rajz, Chirya Ghar, Gumshuda Shehr ki Dāstān*. His extensive clench over the modern Western scholarship, together with his prolific knowledge of the Eastern tradition, which is his abode, predisposes him to an intellectual undertaking that is not witnessed every day…

Aa Bhen Fatima by Baldev Singh
(Punjabi book review

“Aa Behn Fatima” is a short story penned down by Baldev Singh. It provokes feelings of wistfulness and yearning through the story of a forfeited friendship between two women during the partition of 1947. The two women belong to two different religions; one is Sikh and the other Muslim but they share a strong bond of affection. They have to part ways because of partition and all that remains with them are memories of the time spent together and their belongings which they shared with each other. However, the next generation has no regard for the sentimental value of their belongings. In a way, Baldev Singh laments the apathy of next generation that they have no regard for what their elders went through or perhaps they are incapable of empathizing with such great loss and grief…


This is a proud production of the Gurmani Centre’s Urdu Podcast Series Khayāl-o-Nazar kā Silsila (A Chain of Thoughts and Vision) designed to re-introduce the tradition of disseminating words of wisdom in society through didactic literature. Communicated through interesting anecdotes and sayings called hikayāt, both in verse and in prose, this rich literary tradition played an instrumental role in medieval societies to communicate a variety of moral lessons with a special focus on justice and social harmony.

Musleh-ud-din Sheikh Sa’dī (1210-1291) is broadly recognized as one of the most popular authors of Persian literature. He was a prodigious scholar of philosophy as well as an acclaimed author of poetry and prose. This episode talks about Sa’dī Shirazi's hikayāt (short stories and parables) and quotations that highlight human comportment and emotion. The podcast highpoints how Sa’dī’s words reflect his deep insight of human relationships and underlines how the moral of his stories often accentuated the significance of cultivating a sense of accountability to the Divine and to the Self. Sa’dī’s prose has the disposition to educate and draw a moral lesson from everyday occurrences. He comes across as the poet of friendship, of adoration, self-devotion, and equanimity. There is an undeviating dynamism in his thoughts, and a noticeable optimism, which the podcast seeks to emphasize.

Manto’s Short Story “Dhuvāṅ” — A Religious Compendium of Artistic Configuration

Sadat Hasan Manto is now widely acknowledged as a great short story writer of Urdu. He was a creative genius, indeed. Among other things, deep psychological insights of human behaviors and personality seem to have informed ingenuity of his writings. Though he had to face judicial trials—and tribulations—for the charges of obscenity before and after Partition, he never gave in. Controversial for being charged as lascivious, Manto’s short story “Dhuvāṅ” is though much talked about, less interpreted, and evaluated in its own primary context. Akhter Ahsen, a distinguished psychologist and one of the pioneers of Na’ī Shā‘irī movement of 1960s, had analysed it in psychological context but it remained unpublished for long. Its edited version is first time being brought out. To Dr Ahsen, primary context of “Dhuvāṅ” lies in Eastern mythical and religious tradition. This way, Dr Ahsen refutes Manto’s Urdu critics who resort to Western psychological insights to interpret his stories.

Frantz Fanon, Sixty Years after his Death:
Review and Relevance

Frantz Fanon (1925-1961) is undoubtedly the first mental health professional who defined not only dynamics of the psychology of colonialism but also elaborated the phenomenology of it from the perspective of the colonized. Fanon expanded his clinical horizon to diagnose the pathology prepondering more outside of his clinic than inside. He ascertained the aetiology of and intervention for pathological and pathogenic phenomenon of colonialism. As a revolutionary mental health professional, he did not dissolve himself in the professional neutrality. He emerged beside the colonized, pointed out the mechanisms of colonial oppression, and identified the ways the colonized responded to them, pathologically. This article—after sixty years of his death—reviews his three books published in his lifetime to establish relevance of his views in the era of hypercolonialism. Colonialism is indisputably not what it was in Fanon’s time; rather it is more intricate, enigmatic, and invisible now than ever before. The relevance of some of his views has unquestionably been depleted, but most of what he has predicted is more visible today than it was in 1950s.Show less

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