Fears, Tears, Trauma and Violence: A Critical Study of Physical and Psychological Fracturing Experiences in Mirza Waheed’s The Collaborator
Kashmir has been under the influence of militant forces for many decades. Violence, marginalization, and oppression at the hands of militants and the armed forces are common practices that have transformed the earthly paradise into hell. The plight of the people of Kashmir remained hidden from the world's eyes but in the first decade of the 21st century, many Kashmiri writers appeared on the horizon of the world literature to show the tormented picture of the valley to the world. Anglophone Kashmiri writings are characterized by the themes of violence and exploitative and coercive practices such as mass killings, disappearances, rapes, crackdowns, and uprootedness of the people. Mirza Waheed's The Collaborator is one of those dolefully poignant voices of Kashmir that tries to depict the true condition of the people of Kashmir. The present study intended to explore how the writer has portrayed the violent acts undertaken by the militants and armed forces resulting in traumatization and identity fragmentation of the oppressed masses. The multi-theoretical framework for this study was based on the power theory of Dennis H. Wrong (1995) and trauma theories of Cathy Caruth (1996), Jeffrey C. Alexander (2012), and Judith L. Herman (2015). These theories form a nexus and connect. The research focused on certain horrific events of the novel and traced the aspect of trauma resulting from violence, exploitation, and coercion. The findings of the study are eye-opening and add a contribution to the scarce body of research in the domain. It is a significant study because it highlights the condition of oppressed people that still need the attention of the world organizations, NGOs, and academic researchers for the alleviation of their trauma, misery, and excessive exploitation.