The World of Agha Shahid Ali

Edited by Tapan Kumar Ghosh & Sisir Kumar Chatterjee

Subjects: Literary Criticism, Asian American Studies, India And South Asian Studies, Poetry, Postcolonial Studies
Hardcover : 9781438481456, 284 pages, February 2021
Paperback : 9781438481449, 284 pages, July 2021

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Table of contents

Agha Shahid Ali: A Chronology

Tapan Kumar Ghosh and Sisir Kumar Chatterjee

1. Ghazal for Open Hands
Martin Espada

2. Shahid, Some Memories
Peter Balakian

3. Somewhere without Me My Life Begins
Dara Wier

4. Beloved Witness, Beloved Friend
Maureen Nolan

5. Agha Shahid Ali: Notes and Anecdotes on the Growth of the Poet
Fatima Noori

6. "Separation's Geography": Agha Shahid Ali's Scholarship of Evanescence
Amy Newman

7. Agha Shahid Ali and the Ghazals in English
Sagaree Sengupta

8. "I will open the waves": Examining the Hybrid Forms in Agha Shahid Ali's Poetry
Abin Chakraborty

9. Out of Focus: Agha Shahid Ali's Queer Optics
Gayatri Gopinath

10. Beginnings: A Journey with Micronarratives
Amzed Hossein

11. Braiding Disparate Strands: Tracing the Arcs of Agha Shahid Ali's The Half-Inch Himalayas
Jason A. Schneiderman

12. Dialing a Joke: Agha Shahid Ali's Long-Distance Calls to Lands without a Post Office
Vedatrayee Banerjee

13. Archiving Absences: Charting Chronotopes in Agha Shahid Ali's Cartography of Desire
Deeptesh Sen

14. Tradition, Home, and Exile in Agha Shahid Ali'sThe Beloved Witness
Christine Kitano

15. "It Is This": Agha Shahid Ali's Representation of Kashmir in The Country without a Post Office
Claire Chambers

16. Epistemology of Mourning: A Reading of Rooms Are Never Finished
Sisir Kumar Chatterjee and Sinchan Chatterjee

17 Let Your Mirrored Convexities Multiply: On Agha Shahid Ali's "Tonight"
Kazim Ali

18. An Interview with Agha Shahid Ali
Suvir Kaul

About the Editors
About the Contributors

Critical essays on the transnational Kashmiri-American poet.


Featuring essays by American, Indian, and British scholars, this collection offers critical appraisals and personal reflections on the life and work of the transnational poet Agha Shahid Ali (1949–2001). Though sometimes identified as an "Indian writer in English," Shahid came to designate himself as a Kashmiri-American writer in exile in the United States, where he lived for the latter half of his life, publishing seven volumes of poetry and teaching at colleges and universities across the country. Locating Shahid in a diasporic space of exile, the volume traces the poet's transnationalist attempts to bridge East and West and his movement toward a true internationalism. In addition to offering close formal analyses of most of Shahid's poems and poetry collections, the contributors also situate him in relation to both Western and subcontinental poetic forms, particularly the ghazal. Many also offer personal anecdotes that convey the milieu in which the poet lived and wrote, as well as his personal preoccupations. The book concludes with the poet's 1997 interview with Suvir Kaul, which appears in print here for the first time.

Tapan Kumar Ghosh is Associate Professor of English at Tarakeswar Degree College, India. He is the editor of several books, including Mapping out the Rushdie Republic: Some Recent Surveys and In Pursuit of Amitav Ghosh: Some Recent Readings (both with Prasanta Bhattacharyya). Sisir Kumar Chatterjee is Associate Professor of English at Hooghly Mohsin College, India. His books include Philip Larkin: Poetry That Builds Bridges.