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The South Asian Literary Recordings Project

Faiz Ahmad Faiz, 1911-1984


Image of Faiz Ahmad Faiz, 1911-1984

Select page numbers to listen or LCCN to display the bibliographic record.


  1. Naqsh-i faryadi
  2. Dast-i saba
    Dihli : Azad Kitab Ghar, 1953.
    (LCCN: 99944181)

  3. Zindan namah
    Lahaur: Maktabah-yi Karvan, [1956]
    (LC has not acquired this title)

  4. Dast-i tah-i sangh
    Lahaur: Maktabah-yi Karvan, [between 1985 and 1995] (LC has not acquired this title)

  5. Sar-i Vadi-yi Sina
    Karaci : Pak Pablisharz, [1971]
    (LCCN : 74932778)

  6. Sham-i shahr-i yaaran
    Lahaur : Maktabah-yi Karvan, [1978]
    (LCCN: 79930116)

    • "Shaam-i shahr-i yaaran"
      MP3 excerpt: [ Excerpts ]
    • "Mera dard naghmah-yi be sada"
      MP3 excerpt: [ Excerpts ]
    • "Kis tarah aayegi jis roz qaza aayegi"
      MP3 excerpt: [ Excerpts ]

Faiz Ahmad Faiz was born to a landed, educated family in Sialkot of pre-partition Punjab on February 13, 1911. He grew up surrounded by literature with a father who was a friend to many writers, including Muhammad Iqbal. His schooling took him to Lahore where he studied Arabic and English literature. His literary studies laid the foundation for him to create a modern Urdu verse that took on larger social and political issues of his times yet retained the polished style and diction of the ghazal. His death in 1984 was a loss to the Urdu literary world.

He began his career as the editor of the leftist English-language daily, Pakistan Times, as well as the managing editor for the Urdu daily, Imroz. Although his first volume of poetry, Naqsh-e-Faryadi, was published in Lucknow in 1941; he became widely known after the 1952 publication of Dast-e Saba, poems written during his imprisonment by the Pakistani Government. After the Miltary coup led by Zia ul haq in 1979, Faiz lived in self-exile in Beirut writing for the Afro-Asia Writers Association journal, Lotus, until his return to Pakistan in 1982.

As a Marxist Faiz Ahmad Faiz rejected the notion of "art for art's sake". He has been described as a "committed" poet who used his simple verse to probe not only beauty and love but also humanism and justice. His imprisonment was evident in more than his two collections of poems written during his political detention. His translator Shiv K Kumar sees his imprisonment as a "metaphor that embodies his poetic vision." Aside from poet, Faiz was a journalist, songwriter, and activist.

Faiz was a nominee for the Nobel Prize and in 1963 was the first Asian poet to win the Lenin Peace Prize. He recorded for the Library of Congress in Lahore in 1977.

The Library of Congress has fifty-two works by him.

The Library of Congress >> Overseas Offices >> New Delhi
January 11, 2016
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