Thursday, December 9, 2010

Tariq Rahman’s short stories are the stories of Pakistani people. Discuss

Tariq Rahman is a Pakistani storywriter whose very purpose of story writing is to express various emotions and experiences felt by the Pakistani people. His stories are the reflection of Pakistani society to some extent; but it is hard to believe that he completely represents Pakistani society and culture. But Pakistani mindset is to be felt throughout his short stories. It is, however, good enough that he is not influenced by any foreign or western European writer and writes in his own style and content. His writings are original and reflective of his thoughts and experiences in the land of Pakistan. He has not produced many short stories; but the few he has written has been knitted with the soul of Pakistani land and culture.

His characters such as the professor, Tajassur and the narrator in the Work are all Pakistanis with the powers and weaknesses. They speak the language we do; they react to things very much the same way as we do. They are philosophical as well ordinary men. They contemplate and loosely pass over an issue. They have been made from some of the Pakistani people in general.

His themes are Pakistani such as poverty, exploitation, appearances, repressed sexual impulsive, religious extremity and psychological imbalances. His stories, such as “The Work” shows the mechanical routine of money needy workers; while “Bingo” and “Moustache” are set in the distant past, where men battle for survival against the odds of life comic or tragic. Several stories, including “Transfiguration” about a corrupt priest, are written within the social and religious parameters of classical English literature and are set in a nameless European setting in a pre-industrial era. These stories dwell on themes of sexual repression, social hypocrisy and social iniquity and provide interesting parallels with the similar subjects that Tariq Rahman explores in his stories about Pakistan, in the rest of the book.

His style and technique is also Pakistani or to be more exact casual. He has not followed any fictional writer in his art and technique; rather he writers as one writes some type pleasure essays or diaries. He rests more on linguistic and stylistic aspect of language as visible in ‘Work’ and Moustache’. For Tariq Rahman content is important; but it does not seem to be so and is entrapped by the stylistic ornateness. Story does not seem to be following its logical path; but is directed towards it by linguistic compulsion. These features also present him as a typical Pakistani writer.

In short, his stories are the stories of Pakistani society, culture and people because they represent the same themes, problems, issues and characters. Poverty is a Pakistani problem is it has been death with by Tariq Rahman, exploitation and corruption are the issues; so they are the themes of Tariq Rahman’s stories. His stories, largely, give the impression of a traditional land like Pakistani. 

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