First Ever Conference on Pakistani Writing in English Held at Lahore

First Ever Conference Organized by International Centre for Pakistani Writing in English (ICPWE), Kinnaird College (KC)

The conference took place from 17th to 18th February. It was attended by intellectuals, researchers and students from Islamabad, Faisalabad, Karachi, Lahore and Quetta as well as some reputed international specialists. Institutions such as Punjab University, Lahore University of Management Science, Government College University, Beaconhouse National University, Forman Christian College University, University of Sargodha and Kinnaird College participated. Many papers were read, where the role of Pakistani writers was highlighted and the best works were discussed in depth.

ICPWE’s first publication, ‘The Last Tea’ by its founding director Mr. Athar Tahir (a critic, poet and writer) received high commendation. There was also an interactive sitting with two of our contemporary female writers; Zeenat Mahal and Kanza Javed. While Usman Ali’s play, ‘The Guilt’ (a three-act play about famous stage actor Mastana) was rewarded ‘the Best of the Year 2016.’

So for the first time Pakistani writing in English was critically analyzed on such a large scale, while students got the opportunity to meet with the writers and learn from their expertise. Therefore it was immensely appreciated by all those who were present, and hope was expressed that this conference may become an annual feature.

International Centre for Pakistani Writing in English

It was established in August 2014 on the initiative of Dr. Rukhsana David, the principal of KC. It is the first center in the country which aims at preserving and promoting Pakistani writing in English. The center has an exclusive archive consisting of both published and unpublished works by writers like Daud Kamal, Kaleem Duad, Muneeza Shamsie, Ilyona Yusuf, Maki Qureshi, Tariq Ali, Taufiq Rafat, Usman Ali and Zulfikar Ghose.  All forms of writing i.e. plays, poetry, prose, scripts, essays, translations and critiques are to be included. Furthermore it will serve as a platform where research on the writers will be undertaken.

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Hajra Saeed

Hajra Saeed has been writing for the past 20 years. During her career she has contributed to various leading newspapers and magazines, but currently writes for the special supplements of ‘The Nation’. She has written on a wide array of topics; however areas of interest are social issues, religion, philosophy and presenting a positive image of Pakistan. Has experience in copy writing, content writing, technical writing, screenwriting and teaching. Likes to read, do online courses as well as social work.