Hyderabad: Celebrated Urdu litterateur Khalid Jawed's novel The Paradise of Food, translated by Baran Farooqi, has just won the prestigious JCB Prize for Literature.
A landmark Urdu classic known for its radical, experimental form and savage honesty, Paradise uses the idiom of food, cuisine and eating to tell the story of a middle-class Muslim joint family over a span of fifty years. As India – and Islamic culture – hardens, the narrator, whose life we follow from boyhood to old age, struggles to find a place for himself, at odds in his home and in the world outside.
The original work, Nematkhana, was published in 2015.
The winner was chosen from a shortlist of five by a jury comprising journalist and editor A.S. Panneerselvan (chair); author Amitabha Bagchi; author and academician Rakhee Balaram; translator, historian and academician, J. Devika; and author Janice Pariat. This is the only time translations covered all five books on the shortlist.
The prize comprises a citation and a cash award of Rs. 25 lakh....