Authors Posts by Meghna Mudaliar

Meghna Mudaliar


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Jacki Lyden talks with Agha Shahid Ali for NPR, ‘All Things Considered’ at Izhar Patkin’s Studio, 28 July 2001, New York In ‘The Ghat of the Only World: Agha Shahid Ali in Brooklyn,’ his obituary to Agha Shahid Ali, novelist Amitav Ghosh mentions a conversation between him and the poet: I once remarked to Shahid that he was the closest that Kashmir had to a national poet. He shot back: “A national poet, maybe. But not a nationalist poet; please not that.” In many ways, Ali’s poetry epitomizes concerns that are more valid than ever today, twelve years after his death

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By Meghna Mudaliar There seems to be an intrinsic relationship between geography and culture in Ali’s A Nostalgist’s Map of America (1991) and Ondaatje’s The English Patient (1992) that suggests that it is only in the landscape of the individual’s memory and experience that culture may be located and validated. Both writers seem to craft subtextualised landscapes through narratologies that begin as explorations of subjective impressions of geographical spaces, and are transformed into decentralised spaces in which unofficial and personal histories are ‘mapped’ through correlations between the psychological and empirical landscapes that represent individual journeys. The idea of cartography is