Mahwash Ajaz

  • Pakistani liberalism is a study in itself. Unlike classical liberalism that believes in civil liberties under the rule of law with a focus on economic freedom, Pakistani liberalism is gradually turning into a shadow of anarchy. Much of it can be attributed to a certain self-hate that has become ...

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  • Americans, the pioneers of modern day psychology, claim to know mobs and mob behaviors. They say it’s deindividuation or diffusion of responsibility. They say it’s a group of people losing their sense of self and acting as a group instead of one person with their own individual ...

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  • Junaid Jamshed was so many things to so many people, and his loss means so much to so many individuals across the world. I’ve been seeing a lot of dictation about who should feel what about a certain tragedy. Lots of perfectly nice people hating on perfectly nice other people just because ...

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  • “How could you love a woman?” asks Gulistan Khan. “Don’t you know that a woman’s sole purpose is to further your generation, to bear your children? A woman is not made for love.” Such were the words of Gulistan Khan (a character played by Nauman Ijaz, in the play ...

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  • Pakistan assembly finally did what it should have done about fifty years ago: passed a joint resolution that you cannot forgive murderers. In a landmark resolution, Pakistani courts will no longer let honor killers go free in case their families decide to ‘forgive’ them. In another ...

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  • They say audiences are maturing. Thanks to information explosion, audiences know what the marketing moguls are playing at. The pretty girl telling you to cook in only a certain kind of banaspati. The handsome man smiling at you to tell you that you will be just as handsome and just as successful ...

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  • What’s the recipe to commercial success when it comes to cinema? Pakistani filmmakers are finally figuring it out. Actor in Law, starring Fahad Mustafa, Mehwish Hayat and Om Puri, tells us just that. Released on Eid ul Adha 2016, directed by Nabeel Qureshi and written by Fizza Ali Meerza, the ...

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  • Morality is a fun game of Russian roulette for Pakistanis. Whether it’s mainstream media or the dominant narrative, definitions of what is honor and patriotic and treason and humanity and servitude can change within a few years of the news beat.  Back in the day, Pakistani women could ...

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  • I met Amjad Sabri in 2013. I was hosting a live midnight show for Pakistan Television for the month of Ramzan. He was our grand finale guest, we were so excited to see him perform. He was the last performer of Ramzan and I remember him walking and settling onstage with his ...

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  • The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulation Authority (PEMRA) has issued a notice to the makers of the drama Udaari that is currently being aired on Hum TV Network. Set in divisions of rural and urban Punjab, Udaari is a play that highlights the struggles of a poor family that sings and dances for a ...

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  • If you look at our headlines, you’d think the greatest problem Pakistan has is how much money Nawaz Sharif has. It is justified, in a way, the furor the opposition and dissidents make regarding PMLN’s current scandal. Panama Papers, as you all know, revealed that the children of Mian ...

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  • When I wasn’t a parent, I didn’t know what it meant to be one. When you hold your child in your arms for the very first time, when the doc tells you that you have a little human being growing inside of you, when you feel them move and kick and do somersaults in your body, when you see ...

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  • In a country where passions run high when it comes to cricket, honor and patriotism (not necessarily in that order) - everything sort of came together in one big melting pot in today’s match where Pakistan Women’s Cricket Team played against the Indian Team in the World Cricket T20 Cup ...

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  • I am an expat. I have two young kids. I love being a mom. Let me get that out of the way before I move on to what my blog is really about. I’m a full time mother and people tell me that while they have seen many children be super-attached to their moms, they have seen few mothers who are as ...

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  • It is a day of bloody irony. On a seemingly quiet winter morning, on a fairly slow news day, armed gunmen, fully equipped with suicide vests, slipped into Bacha Khan University, Charsadda, and killed twenty-one people, injuring around thirty people. Most of them were staff and students. Among the ...

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  • You know how every child grows up listening to stories of parents getting into scrapes or doing crazy things and then children grow up with those stories in their heads, thinking of them as a benchmark of trouble to get in to? Well, my mom used to ride motorcyles. Those funny little mopeds they had ...

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  • So the 14th of August has come and gone. Every year, in this month, Pakistan and India celebrate their independence. Like thousands of other factors that join, yet separate, India and Pakistan, the Independence Day dates are no exception. It begs the question whether independence is really the word ...

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  • So last year around this time, Imran Khan and Dr. Tahir ul Qadri decided to march to Islamabad against 'rigging' in 2013 elections, insisting that their mandate has been stolen. The "Azadi March" was based on the premise that Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) was involved in systematic and ...

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  • Children are the future, they say. They are proof that God is not yet disappointed with humanity, they say. A little baby’s laughter, the innocence of toddlers, the curiosity and tenacity of pre-pubescents – they are all equally wonderful as they are enigmatic.  On December 16, ...

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  • Pakistanis love a good drama. And you can’t blame them. Everyone does. Everyone loves a good catfight. It’s an integral part of human nature. There can be an entire argument as to why that is - based on evolutionary psychology. And yes, while human beings have considerably evolved from ...

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  • Photos by the author “I’m moving to Yemen.” “Yemen?” “Yemen.” “Oh. Okay. Wow?” That was the standard response I got from people when I told them that I would be moving there. My husband (then fiance) had been working in Yemen for a telecom ...

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  • I’m a stay at home mom. I used to be a clinical psychologist. I used to be a teacher. I used to be a television anchor. I used to be a counselor. I was many things. Until the only thing I am now reduced to is ‘a mother’. I can still be all those things and be a mother, sure. But ...

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  • “We live in a world where there is more and more information, and less and less meaning.”  ― Jean Baudrillard, Simulacra and Simulation The common man is in a curious dilemma nowadays. Whether it is about choosing the latest smartphone to the kind of school he wants to send his ...

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  • It has been six years since I have been an expat. They say you get used to it after a while. I’d say six years can qualify as a while. I still miss Pakistan like you miss a part of your soul. Like you’ve left a person behind. I was born there, grew up there, I still have friends and ...

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  • Ever since Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf began its dharnas in mid-August, there has been a massive influx of opinions, a shift in loyalties and a confusion of concepts in the Pakistani people. There are various categories and explanations and interpretations of what has become one of the most ...

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  • “Breaking news!” “Did you hear? Did you hear?” “What, what happened? Tell me now!” “Switch on the TV! Maybe there’s something on Facebook/Twitter?” “I just got a message saying that…” Ad infinitum. Never a dull day in the ...

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  • How do you hide your guilt? Your sense of shame? You divert attention. You pull the focus on something else. Guilt and shame are unavoidable emotions. They nag at you. They pull at your conscience. They make you uneasy. You can’t deal with them directly, not unless you have massive moral ...

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  • They are safe from the throes of poverty, from the shackles of uncertainty of whether or not you will be able to afford your next meal. They are safe from the worries of health and safety for their children, how to afford them an education, how to flee from a bad situation. Salmaan Taseer was safe ...

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  • The absurdity of human race is often lost from perspective. As we rage, plunder and kill each other, as our days and histories become wrapped with thirst for power and blood and riches, we often lose sight of just what this human race is doing to each other. This message is often found aplenty in ...

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  • What do you do on an ordinary day? Moms like to crib that their ordinary day is not like any other ordinary day. Where single individuals and couples with no kids wake up to the sound of their alarms or the luxury of their own personal schedules, moms wake up to the sound of a crying infant or an ...

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