Claudette Bakhtiar recently completed a MFA in Fiction from Columbia University School of the Arts. She is also a recipient of a 2004 NYFA (New York Foundation for the Arts) Fellowship in Fiction and served on the fiction judging panel in 2008. Her fiction, essays and criticism have previously appeared in Gigantic, The L Magazine, Literary New York, Time Out New York, The Rumpus.net and MrBellersNeighborhood.com. She was also, for four years, the host and curator of a reading series at The International Center, a non-profit located in New York City dedicated to helping new immigrants, which doubled as a fundraiser for the center. She lives in Manhattan with her husband and two children, works part-time as a lawyer, and is presently finishing up her first novel.
A 2010 article from Newsweek made international news with the headline, “Pakistan is the World’s Most Dangerous Country.” Growing up in Pakistan, I rarely experienced moments of panic. Pakistan could be dangerous—like when a bomb went off near my school—but I felt safe in my suburban neighborhood. When I decided to move to the United […]
Sitting in the sunset in the middle of Central Park, the unfamiliar boy and I huddled together in the growing chill of late October, using the excuse of needing bodily warmth to search for some other, more abstract warmth of feeling. We had spent the whole day exploring the Met Museum, and afterwards walked around […]
My father took me to the Coney Island Freak Show every summer growing up. My artist Dad seemed unfettered from his day job as a social worker, sketching subway riders on the hour train ride from the Lower East Side, where we lived surrounded by junkies and prostitutes wandering derelict streets. On the boardwalk, he […]