HIV, Women and Sex Work

The prevalence of HIV/AIDS in Pakistan is still low compared to rates in Sub-Saharan Africa and other countries throughout the world.  But there is also a great deal of denial from government officials and the public about this disease so the numbers may be higher than we think.  For example, in 2002 the official estimate of HIV/AIDS in Pakistan was… Read more →

Chay is For…

In the Urdu language, the letter chay is used as a euphemism for derogatory or taboo expressions. Some of these expressions are “choot” (vagina) and “chootia” (lit. of the vagina, but signifying stupidity that ought to be dismissed). The use of such expressions of insult is pervasive in the Urdu language and extremely problematic. In its original and vernacular usage,… Read more →

All About the Conversation

On November 3, 2007, President of Pakistan, Pervez Musharraf, declared “Emergency Plus” in the country and used it to curtail basic rights such as freedom of speech, movement and expression. The plethora of new, private television channels that had, for most of a decade, dazzled our minds by their sheer numbers, were shut down. The talk shows, the commentary shows,… Read more →