Parveen Shakir, The Voice for Women’s Emotions

Poetry is an amazing portrayal of emotional which not only strikes the ears but it has a direct effect on the heart. Pakistan has seen and experiences multiple great and legendary writers in the History. The art of poetry has been dominated by the male counterparts of society from years and decades. Consequently, only the feelings and emotions of men were articulated whereas, the women were shadowed.

It is the dilemma of our society that a woman is not perceived well if she expresses her raw emotions whereas, it is completely ok for the men to do so. In the society which operates on such dual standards, Parveen Shakir emerged on the surface. She was an exceptional poetess, a woman who did not scare away to emote women. Parveen was a successful woman with a bright career as she worked as a teacher later she becomes a Civil Services Officer for the government as well.

Parveen Shakir was born on 24th November 1952 in Karachi. She completed her higher studies by bagging Mater's degree in English Literature and Linguistics. She also mastered then known to be a male-oriented degree of Bank administration. The segregation amongst male and female orientation had always faded for Parveen Shakir as she did not believe in it. The wonderful women started writing is a young age. Although she had a great passion for poetry, she also wrote columns for Urdu and English newspapers of Pakistan. The earlier writings of Parveen were published under the title of “Beena” later she started using her own name.  She worked as a teacher for nine years until 1986 then she continued to work as the second secretary of Federal Bureau of Revenue. She spent later years of her life in Islamabad.

She was unique in her own ways of writing poetry. While being highly affected by the agonies of women in this society, she was the first person to use the word “larki” in her poetry. She was completely ignorant of how society will respond to her work and she boldly expressed women emotions. The topics of her poetry were mostly based on romanticism. She portrayed the emotions of love, beauty, loneliness, passion, and contradictions by the medium of her poetry.  She also highlighted the issues faced by working women. Her poetry was unique as she used metaphors and personifications to relate women and her life with other things.

Parveen Shakir mostly wrote in two main styles Ghazal and free poems. She had a similar approach in her life to live free of rules and she mostly wrote free of rules. Her published volume of poetry was Khushbu. She received a great response on the publication of Khushbu in 1976. The famous works of Parveen Shakir include Sad-barg, Inkaar, Khud kalami, Kaf e Aina, and Mah-tamaam.  Whereas, she also received prominence from the newspaper columns she wrote under the title of Gosha-e-Chashm.

Parveen Shakir lived as a confident, qualified and a completely independent individual. Her writings were the first to emote women in a male dominant society. She was the first person to express those feelings of women. She was free in all her approaches to life.  The legendary writer left the world in 1994.  She died in Islamabad due to a car accident.

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