And the World Changed
Introduction by Muneeza Shamsie
The only English-language anthology by Pakistani women published in the United States, And the World Changed goes beyond the sensational headlines to reveal the stories of Pakistani women. Immigrants and refugees, travelers and explorers, seasoned authors and fresh voices, the twenty-five writers in this volume are as dynamic and diverse as their stories.
Famed novelist Bapsi Sidhwa portrays a Pakistani community in Houston, Texas, still struggling to heal from the horrors of Partition. In Uzma Aslam Khan's tale, a man working in a Karachi auto body shop falls in love with the magical woman painted on a bus cabin. Bushra Rehman introduces us to a Pakistani girl living in Corona, Queens, who becomes painfully aware of the tensions between established Italian immigrants and their new Pakistani neighbors. Author of what the New York Review of Books has hailed as impressive new fiction, Kamila Shamsie comments on the harsh lives of the poor in Pakistan in a story about a servant girl falsely accused of stealing jewelry from her mistress—who also happens to be her best childhood friend. Humera Afridi powerfully describes the days following 9/11 when a young woman navigates Manhattan's rubble-filled streets to search for a mosque.
Filled with nostalgic memories of Pakistan, critical commentary about the world's current political climate, and inspirational hope for the future, the stories in And the World Changed weave an intricate, enlightening view of Pakistan, its relation to the West, and the women who travel between the two regions.
Featuring: Talat Abbasi, Humera Afridi, Aamina Ahmad, Rukhsana Ahmad, Feryal Ali Gauhar, Sara Suleri Goodyear, Shahrukh Husain, Sabyn Javeri Jillani, Sonia Kamal, Fawzia Afzal Khan, Sorayya Khan, Uzma Aslam Khan, Maniza Naqvi, Tahira Naqvi, Nayyara Rahman, Hima Raza, Bushra Rehman, Fahmida Riaz, Roshni Rustomji, Sehba Sarwar, Bina Shah, Qaisra Shahraz, Kamila Shamsie, Muneeza Shamsie, and Bapsi Sidwa.
"In this anthology there is no shortage of illuminating moments, either cultural or literary. . . . The authors regularly include terms from their native languages, a hybrid form that reminds the reader that these women truly write in the borderlands. [And the World Changed], skillfully collected and assembled, admits us into that life between worlds."
"I could not put this book down! And the World Changed is a groundbreaking collection that has the potential to propel contemporary writing by Pakistani women to the center of postcolonial literary canons. . . . A book to savor, to think upon and share with everyone."
"And the World Changed is a pathbreaking anthology, a feast of women's writing which challenges stereotypes of Pakistani women since Partition. It is essential reading for anyone interested in this emerging literature."
"Muneeza Shmasie's gem-like collection is once personal, autobiographical, and national. The stories suggest that the tiniest personal moments connect, directly or obliquely, to the traumas of national and political identity formation."
"Of immense historic, political, and literary significance . . . these words will change us as they invent worlds we thought we knew."
"[A] must for any world literature collection."
"[And the World Changed] . . . is a welcome addition to the growing corpus of women's writing from the subcontinent. . . . Highly Recommended."