Speaking for Myself: An Anthology of Asian Women’s Writing


The wonderful Dr. Donia Gobar and I are representing Afghanistan in this excellent anthology. Thanks to the hard work of Sukrita Paul Kumar and Malashri Lal, the anthology is quiet expansive and covers West Asia, Central Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia and East Asia. What an honor to be included among such talented women and such important stories. Thank you Sukrita! There will definitely be an even to celebrate the publication of this very soon.


Speaking for Myself: An Anthology of Asian Women’s Writing

By Sukrita Paul Kumar (Editor), Malashri Lal (Editor)

This anthology of stories and poems challenges the stereotypical image of women, particularly Asian women, as passive and submissive. While the women in these stories come from diverse cultural backgrounds, their voices give poignant expression to many issues which are common—motherhood, family dynamics, economic deprivation, sexuality—questioning the patriarchal authority under which they lead their lives. Drawing upon the work of over sixty authors—from China, Mongolia, Myanmar, Bangladesh, Macau, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Afghanistan, India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Azerbaijan, Lebanon, Iran, Iraq, and many others—the book offers a filigree of existential concerns and overlapping cultural patterns reflected in the literatures of these nations, transcending political boundaries.

Publisher: Penguin Books India
ISBN: 0143065335


  1. Donia Gobar

    Your poems in “An Anthology of Asian Women’s Writing” –few words and a world of meaning and feeling…very beautiful poems, short stories with novel quality, heart-felt expresions of lives…

  2. Donia Gobar

    Zohra jan Saed, I hope you do not mind that I have made copies of your two poems in the anthology to give to those who love to read them, when I told them how your very unique and honest art of writing lets words come to life and paint the stories in one’s heart and mind.

  3. zohrasaed

    Dr. Donia jan, Thank you! I am so flattered! The amazing thing about those poems being published is that I wrote them when I was 23 and in my poetry program. So I am delighted beyond belief that they made it so far. I am honored to share the section with you. My father read your poems and he was very moved by your words. Ba khair, the anthology is set for 2010 and your story and poem will be in that one.

  4. Donia Gobar

    Dear Zohra jan, I am touched and honored by your father’s attention to my words. Life is enriched with the magic of real gems of human beings. Real gems, the more pressured, the brighter they shine. You are one! Test of time and life continue to slip gently and brightly inside your verses (in all your poems that I have read), and through your humane actions. Thanks for being in life treasure to make our hearts happy.
    In contrast, the fake gems, no matter how shiny, break down and fade under the slightest pressure.
    May you be safe and happy–as much as possible :)

    1. zohrasaed

      Thank you Donia jan for the sweet comments. You are just beautiful and I cannot wait to meet you in person, ba khair. Your family history is fascinating. I read your website, such an important history to have translated into English. We should talk more about this!

  5. Donia

    Dear Zohra jan,
    It would be so wonderful if we could meet some time in person. Have you seen this site, mgmGhobar.com? There are some interesting articles and poems. Hope to see you in person, and talk about Speaking for Myself. Facinating preview by editors, and very interesting writings by various writers…A very good beginning on the path to explore about Asian writers, women and men both—
    May be when schools are off, I would make it to N.Y., or you could visit Boston?
    Wishing you health, peace, and the best

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