Anthems of Resistance is about the iconoclastic tradition of poetry nurtured by Ali Sardar Jafri, Faiz Ahmad Faiz, Javed Akhtar, Fehmida Riyaz and all those who have been part of the progressive writers movement in the Indian subcontinent. It documents the rise of the Progressive Writers Association, its period of ascendancy, its crucial role in the struggle for independence, and its unflagging spirit of resistance against injustice. In the process, the book highlights various aspects of the PWAs aesthetics and politics such as its internationalist ethos, its romance with modernity, its engagement with feminism, its relationship to Hindi cinema and film lyrics, and the vision of a radically new world which its members articulated with passion. Part history, part literary analysis, part poetic translation, and part unabashed celebration of the PWA era, this book is truly a unique resource for all interested in how poetry shaped pre-independent and nascent Indias political and intellectual culture.
Ali Husain Mir and Raza Mir grew up in Hyderabad on a steady diet of progressive Urdu poetry. They divide their time between India and the US and earn their living as university professors.