by Shahid Nadeem
English translation by Tahira Naqvi
Directed by Noelle Ghoussaini
Studio Theatre at Theatre Row
June 9-25, 2017
ACQUITTAL focuses on
four women in a Pakistan prison in the 80’s and how each represents a different injustice with illuminating revelations. The play was inspired by Shahid’s own imprisonment as young man. He is now the Artistic Director of Ashoka Theatre in Pakistan.
From Shahid Nadeem “ACQUITTAL was written in 1987, while I was living in exile in London. It has a specific reference to the early 1980s, when General Zia-ul-Haq had implemented blatant discriminatory ‘Islamic’ laws (called Hudood Ordinances), which proved to be detrimental to the interests of women and minority groups. These laws were used to punish women and caused gross miscarriages of justice. Zia’s anti-women ‘Islamization’ policies galvanized the women’s movement in Pakistan.”