Postcards from the Archive: Goodbye 2010

in holydays| potpurri

This 6th year of CM will go down in the annals of Chapatism, first and foremost, as a year of the renaissance sprung by Lapata’s posts – for which readers have the bureaucratic morass of academy, “the insane rants of an inflamed tea-partier”, and Sepoy’s badgering to thank – illuminating the particularities of partition or the reluctant feudalism of mango farmers, introducing CM readers to Naiyer Masud and Amitava Kumar, or providing a peep into Memon Sahib’s literary striptease, and culminating in The War and Peace of Hindi Literature!

Sepoy moved to Berlin but continued to bring readers reviews of the quality that they have come to expect from him; reviews such as that of William Dalrymple’s Nine Lives, Amitava Kumar’s A Foreigner, Fatima Bhutto’s Songs of Blood and Sword, and last but not the least, a takedown of a globe-trotter’s cartographic musings.

Some conversations that started in 2009 continued in 2010: amidst growing alienation, Faisal Shehzad became the face of a “Pakistan native;” Pakistan’s originary myth remained tied to spectacular events; Zaid Hamid was given thorough examination by a “so called Pakistani historian,” who also reflected upon the history of erasures and repressions that culminated in the horrific attack on an Ahmadi mosque in Lahore in “We Are All Ahmadi” series. In the year of catastrophic floods, the fires of hatred continued to burn (in) homistan, while the discussion amongst politicians remained focused on how to save the children.

Towards the end of the year, the major event at CM was Granta: Peccavistan (also reviewed by Lapata) and an exploration of the Cocoonistan from whence developmentalist discourse springs.

PS. Simon Digby and Tony Judt will be sorely missed.

PPS. Also see Syed Ahmed Khan and Urdu, and Basanti’s stellar review of Ishqiya.

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