Yasmeen Hameed's Piece Claims Literary Excellence Award
Yasmeen Hameed - Coordinator Gurmani Centre & Writer in Residence (Urdu Literature), Department of Humanities and Social Sciences at LUMS - received the Literary Excellence Award for her book ‘Pakistani Urdu Verse’ sponsored by UBL/Jang at an impressive ceremony in Karachi on July 5, 2012 .
The other two short listed books for the award were Khaled Ahmed’s ‘Word for Word’ and Tariq Rahman’s ‘From Hindi to Urdu’. ‘Pakistani Urdu Verse’, translated and edited by Yasmeen Hameed, introduces sixty three Urdu poets of the twentieth century in English translation along with a comprehensive critique of their work.
The selection focuses on the verse-form called the nazm, and is a compilation of a diverse range of themes and practices that popularised the genre as it developed through the modern and post modern literary trends of the century. The Urdu nazm entered a new phase of evolution when poets like Noon Meem Rashed and Meeraji broke away from the traditional confines of this form and opted for something more amenable to themes defining a new sensibility. However, traditional elements also continued to exist, especially in the use of language, which were worthy enough to be accepted. Structurally, thematically and linguistically, the twentieth century Urdu nazm either suggests a complete shift from earlier practices or is a fusion of the new and the traditional. The selection in this book represents these trends, some of which became popular, whereas some remained and continue to remain significant as agents of change.
The book was published by Oxford University Press.