"The time had clearly come for me to read. Neither my academic training, nor my self-education, nor the education I had received in the course of my political involvements had prepared me to understand the history that was taking such fearsome and fateful shapes all around me. So began that intellectual restlessness, that encounter with theory and history, which is now likely to remain forever unsettled, despite the few cracks that one may occasionally succeed in making in this cloud of unknowing. The essays in this book are among the traces of that restlessness in which I recognize the lineages of my own intellectual present."
(Aijaz Ahmad, Lineages of the Present: Ideologies and Politics in Contemporary South Asia, Verso, 2000)