London: Jemima Khan, ex-wife of Pakistani
cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan will write a book on
her experiences in the country till she left it in 2002.
The book, provisionally called `Surprising Encounters`,
is being promoted by literary agents A P Watt at the Frankfurt
Book Fair and will be published in October 2011.
"I`ve narrowed it down to Middle Eastern Politics,
International Relations or Comparative Religion," Jemima told
to Dawn newspaper.
According to A P Watt of London, founded in 1875 and
describes itself as "the longest-established literary agency
in the world", the book on Pakistan "will be an accessible and
anecdotal, witty and revealing portrait of a country at the
febrile epicentre of world affairs."
"In this book she revisits the country she got to know in
the 1990s, undertaking a journey which begins in Lahore, moves
north to Peshawar and Islamabad before heading down to
Karachi," the agency said.
"Along the way, she encounters a dazzling array of people
- the ordinary, the infamous and the extra-ordinary - who best
illustrate the paradoxes of this country of 165 million
people, which encompasses more than a dozen languages, several
hundred tribes and is very different from the bearded zealots
or military men of the stereotype," it added.
Jemima was only 21 when she married Imran in 1995, who
was twice of her age and converted to Islam. She learnt Urdu
and moved to Khan`s extended family house in Lahore.
During the next decade Jemima came to know and love
Pakistan, `the land of the Pure`, in all its bewildering
complexity and contradictions.
The 35 year-old now lives in London but "has remained
involved in Pakistan, raising funds after the 2005 earthquake
and setting up the `Free Pakistan` campaign in 2007 to protest
the state of emergency during which her ex-husband was
Raised as a Protestant and baptised and confirmed when
she was in her teens, religion was never a driving force in
Jemima`s life before she met Imran. Her father, James
Goldsmith, was raised as a Catholic but his father was Jewish.
The religious eclecticism meant that Jemima "didn`t have
any particular religion but felt an affinity to all religions
and had a more or less non-religious upbringing," the agency
Jemima left studies to marry Imran but resumed it when
she came back. In March, she submitted her dissertation for
her Bachelor`s degree in English Literature from Bristol
University, which she abandoned in 1995. Keenly awaiting the
results, she is figuring out what to study for her Master`s.
Besides her literary pursuit, Jemima led demonstrations
outside Downing Street two years ago against the then military
dictator of Pakistan, Gen Pervez Musharraf when he was meeting
British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, and helped ensure no
serious harm came to her former husband locked up under a
military state of emergency.
She is currently an ambassador to UNICEF UK, trustee for
the Afghan Children`s Trust and a patron of the Quilliam
Foundation, a counter-extremism think tank in the UK."