This paper will introduce intellectual debates from Pakistan's early years to show how the country's future culture was being discussed, deliberated and reshaped in these circles at the moment of its own inception as an independent state. By focussing on the communist perspective on Pakistan's independence, it will seek to illuminate some of those historical moments in Pakistan's history that have not received much attention either from historians or from the public. Within this context, the paper will present contesting voices that are critical of one another—particularly regarding the place of Islam in the new state—in order to rethink Pakistan's early history as a period that could have led to a range of possible future historical trajectories.
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