Afghanistan Analysts Network – English

Posts tagged: Poetry


AAN Obituary: PDPA leader and poet Sulaiman Layeq (1930-2020)

Thomas Ruttig

Sulaiman Layeq, one of the last surviving founding members of the leftist People’s Democratic Party of Afghanistan (PDPA), which changed the country’s history with its coup d’état in 1978, has died in late July. In 1992, he even made it to the top of the party, albeit in its final moments. The circumstances of his death […]

Context and Culture Read more

Memorials and Patrons: How northern Afghan elites try to own history

S Reza Kazemi

Elites in Mazar-e Sharif, the capital of Balkh province and most important city in the north, have, in recent years, supported the building of new memorials and re-naming of the city’s streets and intersections. They are also sponsoring intellectuals and their literary and artistic output. These are politically driven cultural projects, attempts by the leading […]

Context and Culture Read more

Poetry in the time of war

AAN Team

The Free Press Journal (online), 30 November 2013 The online version of this Mumbai daily has re-published a dispatch by AAN’s Borhan Osman about truck poetry in Afghanistan: “Call it poetry in motion. Afghanistan Analysts Network (AAN)’s Borhan Osman while on road trips in the conflict ravaged country has gathered a large collection of  verses […]

AAN in the Media Read more

Dangerous ‘truth’: The Kabul women’s poetry club


BBC, 21 October 2013 Lyse Doucet's story about Kabul's Mirman (Mrs) Baheer literary society, continuing a tradition of women's poetry from Malalai and Rabia Balkhi: "We take pure and sacred words and express our feelings with those words. But I know my society has this belief that writing poetry is a sin."

Recommended Reads Read more

Poetry in Motion: Love, war and politics on trucks

Borhan Osman

I am chasing you like a drone You have become al Qaida; there’s no trace of you Trucks painted in vivid colours and lettered with poems like the one above, which has borrowed the terms of war to describe love, are part of the “cultural landscape” along the dusty roads of Afghanistan, especially the south […]

Context and Culture Read more

Ô BERGER TROUBLÉ – Les talibans, ces poètes méconnus

Other AAN

Le Monde (blog), 16 January 2013 A blogger at the leading French daily picks up Thomas Ruttig’s review of Strick van Linschoten/Kuehn’s anthology of Taleban poetry in Kathmandu-based Himal magazine.

AAN in the Media Read more

Reed flute and gunpowder: Understanding the Afghan Taliban through their poetry

Other AAN

Himal (Kathmandu), 14 January 2013 A review by AAN’s Thomas Ruttig of ‘The Poetry of the Taliban’, edited Alex Strick van Linschoten and Felix Kuehn (London: Hachette, 2012). He finds similarities with pre-war poetry, both in style and subject, and calls the anthology ‘not only a remarkable literary and sociological project but also a reminder […]

AAN in the Media Read more