C. M. Naim

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C. M. Naim (Choudhri Mohammed Naim, born 3 June 1936) is an American scholar of Urdu language and literature. He is currently professor emeritus at the University of Chicago.

Naim is the founding editor of both Annual of Urdu Studies and Mahfil (now Journal of South Asian Literature), as well as the author of the definitive textbook for Urdu pedagogy in English.


Naim was born in Barabanki, India, and educated at Lucknow University, Lucknow, Deccan College, Poona, and the University of California, Berkeley. In 1961, he joined the faculty of the Department of South Asian Languages and Civilizations at the University of Chicago, from which he retired in 2001.


  • Urdu Reader (with John Gumperz). Berkeley: Center for South Asia Studies, University of California (1960).
  • Conversational Hindi-Urdu, 2 vols. (with John Gumperz, June Romery and A. B. Singh). Berkeley: ASUC Store, University of California (1963).
  • Readings in Urdu: Prose and Poetry. Honolulu: East-West Center Press, for the South Asia Language and Area Center, University of Hawaii (1965).
  • Iqbal, Jinnah and Pakistan: The Vision and the Reality. Ed. by C. M. Naim (1979).
  • Curfew in the City: Novella by Vibhuti Narain Rai (translated from Hindi), New Delhi: Roli Books (1998).
  • Zikr-i Mir: The Autobiography of the Eighteenth Century Mughal Poet Mir Muhammad Taqi 'Mir'. (translated from the Persian, with annotation and introduction) (1999).
  • Ambiguities of Heritage: Fictions and Polemics. (1999). Available at http://www.columbia.edu/itc/mealac/pritchett/00litlinks/naim/ambiguities/index.html
  • A Season of Betrayals: A Short Story and Two Novellas by Qurratulain Hyder (translated from Urdu). New Delhi: Kali for Women, 1999.). New Delhi: Kali for Women, 1999.
  • Introductory Urdu, 2 vols. Chicago: Committee on Southern Asian Studies, University of Chicago, 1975. Revised edition, 1980. Third revised edition, Chicago 1999. Also published, New Delhi, (2000).
  • Inspector Matadeen on the Moon: selected satires of Harishankar Parsai (translated from Hindi). New Delhi: Katha (2003).
  • Urdu Texts and Contexts: The Selected Essays of C. M. Naim. New Delhi: Permanent Black (2004).
  • A Killing in Ferozewala: Essays / Polemics / Reviews. Karachi: City Press (2013).
  • The Muslim League in Barabanki: Essays / Polemics. Karachi: City Press (2013).

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