Sunday, April 25, 2010

We fight, not over Kashmir but over who will wash the dishes

Amitava Kumar, author of Husband Of A Fanatic (2004), watched the to-do over the Sania-Shoaib match with some bemusement and a great deal of empathy. After all, the professor of English at Vassar College in New York State had not only married a Pakistani himself, but also written a book on it. In an interview with DNA, Kumar provides a characteristically tongue-in-cheek and at the same time insightful view on cross-border relationships that transcend the prejudices bearing down on them.

Where did you meet your wife? Was it love at first sight?
My wife’s name is Mona Ahmad Ali. I met her in New York City, in August of 1997, during the India Day parade. I began to fall in love with her when I found myself writing a poem about that day. “I have lost India, you have lost Pakistan, we have become the citizens of General Electric...”

What was the courtship like? Was it fascinating for you to be going out with a Pakistani and for her to be dating an Indian?
The New York Times had just published a story about Indians and Pakistanis getting along together in places like Queens. I was happy that I was part of an international trend. It is not every day that you have a part of your life validated by The New York Times!

Full report here DNA

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