In line with its ongoing efforts to document, preserve and promote indigenous folk culture and heritage of Pakistan, the National Institute of Folk & Traditional Heritage (Lok Virsa) has published a book titled ‘Forgotten Faces — Daring Women of Pakistan’s Folk Theatre’ by Dr. Fouzia Saeed.
The launching ceremony of the book took place at the Lok Virsa Media Studios. Federal Secretary for National Heritage and Integration Faridullah Khan was chief guest on the occasion.
In his opening remarks, the chief guest said theatre has been an indigenous expression for polarities of human life like happiness and sadness, calamities and miracles, heroes and villains, and romances and tragedies.
“South Asia being an oral culture, has counted on story-telling as one of its main modes of transferring cultural knowledge from one generation to the next. The story-telling, over a period of time, has become the major source of entertainment for rural masses,” he said.
He congratulated Lok Virsa and Dr. Fouzia Saeed, the author of the book, for their efforts in bringing out the publication. He expressed hope that the initiative would go a long way in acquainting the youth community about this dying art form.
In his welcome speech, Lok Virsa’s Executive Director Khalid Javaid said the book in question focuses primarily on the daring women of Pakistan’s folk theatre.
He said Lok Virsa is a specialised culture and research oriented organisation established in the year 1974 with a mandate for collection, documentation, preservation and dissemination of all forms of Pakistan’s rich cultural heritage.
Khalid Javaid maintained Lok Virsa’s mission is to foster the excellence, diversity and vitality of all facets of tradition and to broaden public access to knowledge.
Former director Lok Virsa Dr. Shamim M. Zaidi who is currently heading the department of communication at Fatima Jinnah Women University also spoke on the occasion.
The launching ceremony was followed by live performances featuring Abida, Naznin Mano, Fazal Jat and Saima.