The Dancing Girls of Lahore

I've been reading The Dancing Girls of Lahore by Louise Brown, a teacher in the sociology department at the University of Birmingham in England.

Over a period of more than four years, Brown documented the lives of several individuals living and working in Heera Mandi, the red light district of Lahore. She interacts with many people in the community, and she describes their lives in vivid detail, but the author's greatest focus is on one middle aged dancer and her female children who are destined to follow in their mother's footsteps because of culturally imposed restrictions on class and gender. This is initially written with the eye of a scholar, but as time passes, Louise Brown becomes more personally attached to her subjects which lends itself to a more emotional and compassionate telling of their lives, culture, and historical role in Pakistan.

There is also quite a bit of information regarding religion, particularly the Shia branch of Islam. It's a fascinating and important book, particularly for those who are interested in gender studies as they relate to the Middle East.


Anonymous said...

How many pages is it?


Cyan said...

It's 336 pages, and it's an engrossing read.