More DW Blogs DW.COM

Women Talk Online

A forum for women to talk to women

Female Polish writer discovers Pakistan

“Before coming to Pakistan, I didn’t think that Pakistani women were sometimes so independent. I had always thought that Pakistani women were the most oppressed class of the society, dependent on men in every walk of life.”

This is a statement by Joanna Kusy, a Polish writer who has been living in Pakistan for the past five years. “The normal Pakistani life”, a book that she wrote in Polish about Pakistan, has gained widespread acclaim in the country itself. It is mostly about the biggest city in the country, Karachi and describes the cultural scene there, as well as given an overview of Sufi culture, values and customs and Pakistani history in general.

In the preface, Kusy writes: “This book contains neither scary tales nor literary dramas. This is the gist of my handful experiences and memories in Pakistan so far of the last few years, when my glittering bridle clothes were hung in the almirah (cupboard, cabinet) and the color of henna on my hands became dull. After moving to Pakistan, I found everything very different and unlike the environment I grew up in. But I believe that behind every feeling there is only one wielding power, and that is the power of love. This power forced me to move to Pakistan.”

Kusy, who is a sociologist, told DW in an interview that as a foreigner she had found it difficult to integrate herself into Pakistani society but that she found it very interesting to live there. She said that it had been particularly illuminating to observe the differences between social classes in Pakistan. She said that people with a stronger educational and economic background should help women from more deprived classes.

She also realized how prejudiced she was and was pleasantly surprised to find that Pakistanis were quite different in reality than she had ever imagined.

She also found that there were many similarities between Pakistan and her home country, including the importance of family values for example.

She now feels so integrated that when she actually goes back to Poland she misses Pakistan!


Author: Saima Hyder Zaidi

Editor: Anne Thomas


07.03.2018 | 14:51