This book fills the need for a broad, historically sophisticated understanding of Pakistan, a country which is understood by many in the West only in terms of stereotypes-the fanatical, authoritarian and reactionary 'other' which is unfavourably compared to a tolerant, democratic and progressive India. Pakistan is in reality a complex plural ...
This book fills the need for a broad, historically sophisticated understanding of Pakistan, a country which is understood by many in the West only in terms of stereotypes-the fanatical, authoritarian and reactionary 'other' which is unfavourably compared to a tolerant, democratic and progressive India. Pakistan is in reality a complex plural society which although greatly shaped by the colonial inheritance and circumstances of its birth, is also experiencing rapid change. Talbot's approach breaks down stereotypes and assists in answering the vexed question of why democracy has succeeded in India, while Pakistan has been subject to long periods of authoritarianism during its five decades of existence. He brings the story of Pakistan right up to date and discusses the rise of jihadi militancy, the assassination of Benazir Bhutto and the resilience of its people in the face of military dictatorship and economic hardship.
Publishers Weekly, 1998-10-19 Coventry University historian Talbot piles fact upon grim fact to show how Pakistan, born in suffering, has yet to heal the wounds of its past. The woes of this strategically located country seem overwhelming: rapid urbanization and population growth; high infant mortality and low literacy; unfavorable balance of payments; an economy skewed toward military spending; environmental pollution; refugee problems; and violence related to the trafficking of drugs and arms. Islam, with its various flavors, has provided "insufficient cement" for building a nation out of warring ethnic, linguistic and regional factions. Added to all this is the country's perennial conflict with India, and the nuclear competition darkening the horizon. Talbot expresses faith in the courage and resilience of the Pakistani people, but his account of authoritarian regimes, chaotic elections and failed efforts at reform is at odds with his hopes for participatory democracy. Bound to become a standard reference among the watchers of South Asia, this book analyzes the rise and fall of such leaders as Abdul Khan, Yahya Kahn, Zia-ul-Haq, Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and Benazir Bhutto, the first female leader of a Muslim state. Even informed readers may be daunted by the detail, and the glossary, table of abbreviations, capsule biographies and short histories of political parties are essential to keeping on top of the densely packed material. (Nov.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Alibris, the Alibris logo, and Alibris.com are registered trademarks of Alibris, Inc.
Copyright in bibliographic data and cover images is held by Nielsen Book Services Limited, Baker & Taylor, Inc., or by their respective licensors, or by the publishers, or by their respective licensors. For personal use only. All rights reserved. All rights in images of books or other publications are reserved by the original copyright holders.