The Reluctant Fundamentalist
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|The Reluctant Fundamentalist|
1st edition (UK)
Hamish Hamilton (UK)
|Publication date||01 March 2007|
The Reluctant Fundamentalist is a novel by British-Pakistani author Mohsin Hamid, published in 2007.
The novel uses the technique of a frame story, which takes place during the course of a single evening in an outdoor Lahore cafe, where a bearded Pakistani man called Changez (the Urdu name for Genghis) tells a nervous American stranger about his love affair with an American woman, and his eventual abandonment of America. A short story adapted from the novel called "Focus on the Fundamentals" appeared in the fall 2006 issue of The Paris Review. A film adaptation of the novel by director Mira Nair premiered at the 2012 Venice Film Festival.
Awards and nominations
The novel was shortlisted for the 2007 Booker Prize. It also won an Anisfield-Wolf Book Award, the South Bank Show Annual Award for Literature, and several other awards. The Guardian selected it as one of the books that defined the decade.
The novel became an international best-seller. It reached #4 on the New York Times Best Seller list. BBC Radio 4 began broadcasting an abridged version on 22 August 2011, read by British actor Riz Ahmed.
In 2007, Davidson College assigned this book to all incoming Freshman as a topic for later discussion during Freshman Orientation. This book kicked off the theme of the school's 2007-08 year, which focused on diversity. In 2008, Tulane University gave the novel to all new undergraduates as part of the Tulane University Reading Project. In 2009, the University of St Andrews announced that they would be sending a free copy of The Reluctant Fundamentalist to all of 1,500 new undergraduates as part of a new incentive to "offer students a common topic for discussion and focus energies on reading and intellectual debate". In 2010, Washington University in St. Louis also gave the book to each of its incoming freshmen, as a part of the "Freshmen Reading Program." Georgetown University also chose this book for incoming freshman's summer reading. Ursinus College has also incorporated the novel into their unique Common Intellectual Experience for freshmen students. Additionally, Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas uses the book in all honors rhetoric classes for first-year students. Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa and Siena College in Loudonville, New York also use the novel as an introduction to their First Year Seminar programs. Lehigh University assigned all incoming freshman this novel in 2012.
A film, based on the book, premiered in 2012.