Karachi is a city framed in the popular imagination by violence, be it criminality and gangsterism or political factionalism. That perception also dominates literary, cinematic and scholarly representations and discussions of this great metropolis.
By commenting in different ways on the trials and tribulations of Karachi and Pakistan, the contributors to this innovative book on the city build on past writings to say something new or different - to make their reader re-think how they understand the processes at work in this vast urban space.
They scrutinise Karachi's diverse neighbourhoods to show how violence is manifested locally and citywide into protest drinking, social and religious movements, class and cosmopolitanism, gang wars, and how it affects the fractured lives of militants and journalists, among others. Oral history and memoir feature strongly in the volume as do insights gleaned from anthropology and political science
The contributors include academics, ethnographers, journalists, writers and activists: Nadeem F. Paracha, Laurent Gayer, Zia Ur Rehman, Nida Kirmani, Nichola Khan, Oskar Verkaaik, Arif Hasan, Razeshta Sethna, Asif Farrukhi, Kausar S. Khan, Farzana Shaikh, and Kamran Asdar Ali.
Nichola Khan is a social anthropologist and principal lecturer in the School of Applied Social Science at the University of Brighton. She is the author of Mohajir Militancy in Pakistan. Her subsequent work analyses migration, mobilities, transnational labour, and kinship networks amongst Afghan migrants in the UK, Peshawar and Afghanistan. She is also a Chartered Psychologist and the author of Mental Disorder: Anthropological Insights.