The weekend again had some new and unique things to know and think about literature, as this workshop was an effort to know the concept of literature and role of writers and poets in building a nation according to Iqbal.
Some excerpts from Asrar-o-Rumooz were read and then the participants were invited to revisit their own concepts of literature in the light of Iqbal’s views about good and bad literature. It was surprisingly observed that most of the qualities that were described as “bad” by the participants turned out to be the qualities of “good” literature according to Iqbal.
For Iqbal the literature should not slavishly imitate the existing realities but should be idealistic. Writers can address the existing issues and their solutions through characters that should become ideals for the readers, so that readers learn to apply the same approach in their lives. Also, writers and poets are responsible to guide the readers towards the positive side of the world, and to describe and show beauty, love, desire and the quest for glory. Literature should have vision and inspiration that could lead the reader towards character development and could unfold the layers of thinking in their mind.
Later, the literature of Pakistan since Iqbal was revisited in the light of the seven stages of Pakistan’s history and the ideals commonly sought by the nation, to see which writers and poets have influenced the masses most during various periods of our history.