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Tainted Veil: Desire, Poetry, and Literary Culture of South Asia

January 21, 2022 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm EST

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“Tainted Veil” revisits the question of desire and the making of poetic subjectivity in the Persianate literary archives of South Asia. It examines the nom de plume, life and poetry of Dagh Dehlvi, Munni Bai Hiiab and Mir Yar Ali Khan “an Sahib” in the Persianate milieu of nineteenth-century Delhi, Rampur, Calcutta and Hyderabad. The paper attempts to read poetry as an affective archive of the forbidden desire and emotions. Following Lacanian psychoanalytical approach, I propose reading the desire for the “Other” in poetry to rethink our conventional understanding of gender, sexuality, and subjectivity.

Dr. Razak Khan is a Research Fellow in the History Research Group at the University of Göttingen. He has published various articles on Urdu public and performance culture and archives in India and German. He recently edited The Incomparable Festival. Penguin Black Classic,2021. His book, Minority Pasts: Locality, Emotions and Belonging in Princely Rampur, is forthcoming with Oxford University Press in 2022.




January 21, 2022
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm EST
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