PLEASURE GARDENS: Blackouts and the Logic of Crisis in Kashmir

Text by Skye Arundhati Thomas & Izabella Scott; Photos by Ufaq Fatima, Nawal Ali & Zainab

Out with MACK in June 2024

‘A searing and forensic exposé of the Indian-Israeli special relationship and its terrifying tactics of oppression… A stark and much needed analysis.’ – Preti Taneja

‘Under siege and blacked out – this intimate, haunting account of the daily workings of occupation illuminates its slow, subtle evils… It is important reading right now.’ – Tessa McWatt

Land is stolen and liberty denied… Though it proceeds with the cold relentlessness of a thriller, everything in “Pleasure Gardens” is all too real. Brilliant, urgent work.’ – Sita Balani

‘It is one thing to read the bald facts about Kashmir. To read PLEASURE GARDENS is first to live through the 2019 occupation as it unfolded on the ground, and then to grasp the full horror of its imported military logic. What I learned from these pages will forever be imprinted on my heart.’ – Maureen Freely

Read an excerpt here

PLEASURE GARDENS is an urgent two-part project that investigates the military occupation, land appropriation, and communication blackouts in Kashmir, a region whose heavily militarized borders have frequently been a site of conflict between India and Pakistan. Taking a 213-day blackout in 2019 as its starting point, the project aims to detail the reasoning behind these blockades, seeking a new register of writing and image that makes visible the conditions of occupation and the protracted violence of the blackout.

In the book’s first part, Scott and Thomas bring together hundreds of sources, filling in the gaps from Srinagar to the remote Himalayan valleys along the Line of Control between India and Pakistan, to create a unique log of fifteen days under siege, during which Kashmiri constitutional rights were revoked, the state partitioned, and stripped of its special statehood. In the second part, the authors examine Kashmir’s occupied territories and the complex ways in which India’s infrastructure of surveillance and occupation is borrowed from Israel’s occupation of Palestine.

Including photo essays by Ufaq Fatima, Nawal Ali and Zainab, this remarkable publication offers a crucial exploration of blackouts, their aftermath and the twisted logic of crisis on which they rely.

Paperback with flap
12.5 x 19.5cm, 96 pages

ISBN 978-1-915743-23-7
June 2024
€18 £14 $18

Pre-order HERE