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Asia Leadership Fellow Program


Book Launch by Dr. Fouzia Saeed
Japanese Translation of TABOO: The Hidden Culture of the Red Light Area

The red light district in any country reveals aspects of a society that reveals much about the other parts of the society which people usually are not willing to face. It remains cloaked in mystery, stamped with stereo types and shunned by “highly moral” people. Thus studying it is always difficult and creates a reaction, especially in a Muslim country like Pakistan.

Dr Fouzia Saeed, who is currently in Pakistan under the Asian Leadership Fellow Program, co-sponsored by the International House of Japan and the Japan Foundation, is the author of the book, TABOO: The Hidden Culture of a Red Light Area. Her eight years of anthropological research culminated in the form of stories of people from the red light district of Lahore, Pakistan. These present a nonjudgmental understanding of this phenomenon without the lens of morality or judgment. Through shedding light on one aspect of society this book enables us to look at the larger society. Similarly, by looking at gender issues in one society we can find lessons for other societies. Please join us for a lively talk about hidden aspects of modern Pakistan with the author at the launch of the Japanese translation of the book.


Date & Time: Nov. 11 (Thu.), 2010, 6:30-8:00 pm

Lecture Hall, International House of Japan


English (with consecutive Japanese translation)


Program Dept., International House of Japan

Co-organized by:

the Asia Leadership Fellow Program and Commons


Fouzia Saeed: Director, Mehergarh
Dr. Saeed is well known in activist circles of Pakistan's social movement, having worked for decades on women’s issues, especially those linked to violence against women, prostitution, women in the entertainment business, women’s mobility and sexual harassment. She founded the first women’s crisis center in Pakistan in 1991. During her career she has headed the UN Gender Program in Pakistan, served as Pakistan Country Director for Action Aid and currently is an international consultant in the field of Gender and Development. In addition to her current activist work as the Director of Mehergarh, an institute committed to transforming the youth of Pakistan, an urgency to work on anti-Talibanization has moved her to be a part of a nationwide movement against this vicious process. She has a Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota. Her earlier work with the Folk and Traditional Heritage Institute (Lok Virsa) led to the book Women in Folk Theater.


Those who wish to attend are requested to call or e-mail the ALFP Secretariat for reservations.

ALFP Secretariat
c/o Program Department
International House of Japan
5-11-16 Roppongi, Minato-ku Tokyo 106-0032 JAPAN
Tel: +81-3-3470-3211 Fax: +81-3470-3170 E-mail

*ALFP (Asia Leadership Fellow Program) is the program organized by the Japan Foundation and International House of Japan.

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