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Sualeh Zafar 2023-11-0147 SS102-Pakistan Studies Mrs. Anam Fatima Take-home Final Exam Q1. According to Jalal, the state sought to conjure an official identity and imagining via the history curriculum being taught to Pakistani students. What were the most profound consequences of this history making and what were its inherent contradictions?
state power. One such critic is the historian Ayesha Jalal, who in her article “Conjuring Pakistan: History as Official Imagining” criticizes the state’s distortion of history, whilst analyzing the consequences of this ‘history-making’ for Pakistani society and highlights the problems this approach has bred. The Pakistani state’s reimagining of history has led to a confrontational, bigoted nationalism (based on “us vs. them”), the inability to determine any single, acceptable origin for Pakistan, using claims of sacrifice as rights to passage, and contradictory representation of the views/stances of its most important political figures. To instill a singular nationalist identity in students, the state attempts to bundle up Pakistan’s populace under the umbrella term “us”, whereby Pakistani patriotism becomes synonymous with adhering to the state’s version of religion whilst facing against un-Islamic opponents who have been separated into the alien classification of “them”. The narrative of “us vs them” is frequently seen in historical textbooks which nationalize Pakistan’s past by reimagining it as a simplified conflict of Muslims contending against sustained Hindu hostility.

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