‘Writing is my prayer or, in Goethe’s words, my contemplation…’
Punjabi audio read by Shobha Kumar
Scroll down for Hindi and English translations
( The questions we posed to the author were:
1. Could you tell us about some specific gendered aspect of your work? Something that keeps recurring, or has intrigued or frustrated you, something you've seen change; maybe a character or other formal element in your work, or the work of someone you admire, that challenges notions of gender?
2. Could you tell us about being a woman in your profession, vs being a man? How have things changed over the years, or not, and what advice would you give young women or men entering the profession? )
Dalip Kaur Tiwana is one of the foremost writers in Punjabi today. She has published forty novels, seven collections of short stories, two autobiographies and a literary biography. In 2015, she returned her Padma Shri in protest against growing intolerance in India, saying, 'In this land of Gautama Buddha and Guru Nanak Dev, the atrocities committed on the Sikhs in 1984 and on the Muslims recurrently because of communalism are an utter disgrace to our state and society. And to kill those who stand for truth and justice puts us to shame in the eyes of the world and God.'
This is the penultimate interview in an ICF series begun on International Working Women's Day in which women teachers, journalists, musicians, students, lawyers, startup employees – all young, established, or retired professionals in their fields – discuss gendered aspects of their work and working life.
Top image: Lascaux, France / Les Eyzies
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