Classes………………..Wednesday and Friday: 11.45 am - 1.25 pm
Office………………… Room 216, New SS Wing
Women writers of the subcontinent have struggled through a long period of cultural and social suppression, remaining within the confines of preconceived themes for writing and hiding behind pseudonyms or names of male family members for getting their works published. The history of Urdu Literature goes back about three hundred years or even more, across the Moghul period to the times of Amir Khusrau and even into the Ghaznavid era where earliest signs of a new language and literature can be traced. All through these centuries, women writers do not figure as a source of any particular influence on the literary landscape of the region, although the verse of some women, like Zebunnisa, daughter of Emperor Aurangzeb, has survived, despite a controversy associated with her takhallus. Taking into account the status of women writers in the subcontinent in the past and even as close as the early twentieth century, their acceptance as mainstream writers over a period of just a few decades is no minor event. This course takes into account the emergence of women writers in Urdu Literature, a critique of their selected works and their influence on the collective literary output of the language and the region.
creating an awareness about the struggle that women writers went through in order to be accepted in the mainstream
creating an awareness about the similarities and differences between the sensibilities of male and female writers of this region; how the perception of women writers about their surroundings and about themselves differs from their male counterparts as well as from each other
creating an awareness about the collective quality of literature created by women, especially in the twentieth century
Prerequisite …. Convenience in reading Urdu
Grading & Attendance Policy: Attendance: 5%
Class Participation: 10%
* Class Tests: 15%
** Group Presentation: 15%
Mid-Term Exam: 25%
Final Exam: 30%
* There will be two announced tests during the quarter. Students may be asked to briefly write response papers based on the assigned reading, at the beginning or end of a session. Marks obtained in these response papers will also be added to Class Tests.
** Group Presentations will be organized according to the number of students in the class. Topics will be given by the instructor before the mid term exam.
A historical overview of the role of women writers in literature….. Women
writing in Urdu in the sub-continent ….. 18th, 19th centuries….. The emergence of women writers in the 20thcentury