A:     The literary festival is really quite remarkable. I just got back and I feel absolutely inspired and educated. No better way to spend a weekend and guess how much it costs? Nothing. Free! Free and open to the public, with refined audiences who sit and listen to the speakers, who ask challenging questions and respect the etiquettes of performance. I could hardly believe I was in Lahore.

S:     You weren't really in Lahore you know. You were on an oasis of well-educated, English speaking, bourgeoise kids and artists and foreign journalists, all of whom love to applaud each other's organic ideas on politics and literature and art. It's the perfect illustration of the self-imposed isolation of the English speaking classes of this country and their inability to engage with anyone other than themselves.

A:     Sadiq, there were students there hungry for knowledge. Humble artists who spoke about their journeys from the walled city to the galleries of London. There were all sorts of people listening in, just wanting to be inspired and expecting nothing more. It was beautiful, it was simple and intellectually stimulating. Please don't make everything so political.

S:     Look, I understand that you had a wonderful time and that you seldom are intellectually stimulated, though if you were only to go looking in the right places you'd realise that knowledge is everywhere around us. Regardless, I think these things should be analysed critically because now we are going to have a bunch of English newspapers applaud a bunch of English speakers and English listeners in a third world country where the masses could hardly understand let alone read a word of the "intellectualism" coming out of every session. With all this self- congratulating, it's absolutely required to talk politically about what we are doing wrong within the things we are doing right. These literary festivals should have more in them for non English speakers, if it's ever going to be truly inclusive.