Mohsin Hamid biography

Author Biography  | Interview  | Books by this Author  | Readalikes

Mohsin Hamid
Photo: Ed Kashi

Mohsin Hamid

How to pronounce Mohsin Hamid: Moh-sin Hum-eed

Mohsin Hamid Biography

Mohsin Hamid is the author of four novels, Moth Smoke, The Reluctant Fundamentalist, How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia, and Exit West, and a book of essays, Discontent and Its Civilizations.

His writing has been featured on bestseller lists, adapted for the cinema, shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, selected as winner or finalist of twenty awards, and translated into thirty-five languages.

Born in Lahore, Pakistan, he has spent about half his life there and much of the rest in London, New York, and California.

Mohsin Hamid's website

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Interview

Mohsin Hamid talks about his novel The Reluctant Fundamentalist, and some of the challenges in writing about such a difficult topic in a post 9/11 world.

The Reluctant Fundamentalist is a monologue about a young Pakistani’s experiences in America at the time of the 9/11 attacks. What made you choose this format, which has the Pakistani telling his tale to an American whose voice is never actually heard?
The form of the novel, with the narrator and his audience both acting as characters, allowed me to mirror the mutual suspicion with which America and Pakistan (or the Muslim world) look at one another. The Pakistani narrator wonders: Is this just a normal guy or is he a killer out to get me? The American man who is his audience wonders the same. And this allows the novel to inhabit the interior emotional world much like the exterior political world in which it will be read. The form of the novel is an invitation to the reader. If the reader accepts, then he or she will be called upon to judge the novel’s outcome and shape its ending.

Your protagonist, Changez, faces both internal and external pressures as a foreigner living in a country that’s shocked into a volatile patriotism. What was your biggest challenge in writing about his experience?
My biggest challenge was not having the delicate architecture of the novel—its plot and characters...

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Books by this Author

Books by Mohsin Hamid at BookBrowse
Exit West jacket How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia jacket The Reluctant Fundamentalist jacket Moth Smoke jacket
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