A Wilderness of Possibilities brings together eleven essays exemplifying the changing place of Urdu in today's world. Written by specialists in the field, they discuss diverse aspects of Urdu and Persian literature and poetry between the sixteenth and twentieth centuries. While the focus is mainly on Urdu poetry, offering a comprehensive introduction to the sociology, culture, and politics of its enchanting and complex world, the volume also includes essays on travelogues, print journalism, and a play. The first part explores the divergent social and political spaces that Urdu literature has occupied through the centuries while the second part critiques the paradigms that have informed Urdu literary history and point to new methodologies of reading. The book will interest scholars and students of South Asian cultural history and literary studies as well as general readers interested in the subject.
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Kathryn Hansen is Professor, Department of Asian Studies and former Director, Center for Asian Studies, University of Texas at Austin.
David Lelyveld is Associate Dean of Humanities and Social Sciences and Professor of History, William Paterson University.
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