To believe in one’s own abilities when it comes to achieving a goal is phenomenally important. And so much of that sense of motivation as an individual comes from the voices around you. When you ask yourself, “Can I do this?” one of the first things that you would look for is an example of someone around you who succeeded. But what if you were constantly bombarded with a sense of negativity and instead of hearing, “You can do this.” all you hear is, “things never change here”, “nothing good ever gets made here”, “our people are simply incapable of quality work”. What that does is create a deep rooted sense of inferiority especially when you come across someone from a community that believes in itself.

I don’t want to go on a rant about belief and motivation but these things matter.

That’s one of the fundamental reasons we are focusing on local authors. It’s not for the current local authors. It’s for the ones who haven’t even started writing yet. A lot of students nowadays don’t even know about the good things that our local authors have produced.

When everyone starts looking towards western literature at the expense of local literature, that’s a problem. Let’s be clear about one thing. Some of the work that is being produced outside Pakistan is phenomenal, is truly mind blowing. However, does that mean Pakistani authors are incapable of producing quality work? Of course not. Does it mean that there has never been any quality literature produced in Urdu? Absolutely not.

This is not about east versus west. It’s simply about acknowledging the good that exists in your own community, in your own society. If you only focused on the bad in your community and on the good things outside it, you would just end up feeling horrible.

This recognition, this acknowledgment of the good things matters because the day you realize that people from your own country have already produced some wonderful work, you would be able to relate and instead of feeling inferior about your society, you would be filled with a sense of pride. And maybe, just maybe when you see that your history does have heroes, people who maybe were not acknowledged, but were heroes nevertheless, you would be motivated and you would believe in yourself, that you’re capable of doing great things because people from your society, your area, your community already have done them.

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