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A nymphomaniac nawab and his fiercely clever footman.
The awakening of a servant-child's passion.
A divorce fuelled by envy, illicit love and suppression.
A noble set to transform the history of royal marriages.
Set in Hyderabad's old-world aristocratic society of the 1950s, this stellar collection of stories resurrects and explores the work of Wajida Tabassum, one of the most prominent names in Urdu literature, an iconoclast and non-conformist often referred to as the 'female Manto'. In her lifetime, Tabassum's fearless portrayal of the realities of the society she lived in met with severe criticism from the so-called custodians of culture of the time, and she was reviled to the point that mobs set out to torch her publishers' offices.
Sin showcases Tabassum's boldest short stories, alongside the story of her own life, translated for the first time into English, in which she captures, in riveting prose, the spectrum of depravity among Hyderabad's elite, middle-class compulsions in the mid-twentieth century, and blurred lines of decency and decorum.
Featuring lascivious nawabs, lustful begums, cunning servants, and unfulfilled marriages marked by peculiar rituals and customs, this volume will surprise, intrigue and entertain readers in equal measure.
Wajida Tabassum (16 March 1935-7 December 2011) lived in the princely state of Hyderabad Deccan located in south-central India and was a writer of fiction, verses and songs in Urdu. One of the foremost women writers in the language, she was known for her audacious and semi-erotic stories and her formidable power of storytelling. Her bold writing, through which she took on societal taboos, was seen as immoral and scandalous and faced many a public protest. Otherwise a woman who lived in purdah, Tabassum chose to write about strong and uncomfortable themes that made her â€˜unpopularâ€™ with the Indian society of the mid-1900s.
During the 1960s and 1970s, her stories were published in India in many magazines. Her books include Teh Khana, Kaise Samjhaoon, Phul Khilne Do, Zakhm-e-Dil Aur Mahak Aur Mahak, and Zan, Zar, Zameen, which was her last work, published in 1989. Her story titled '˜Utran' (Cast-offs) was televised as a popular soap opera of the same name in India in 1988.