Shahida Rahman

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Shahida Rahman
Native name
শহীদুন নেসসা রহমান
BornShahidun Nessa Karim
(1971-12-14) 14 December 1971 (age 47)
Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, England
Pen nameShahida Rahman
OccupationAuthor, writer, publisher
GenreFiction, non-fiction
Years active2003–present
RelativesAbdul Karim (father)
Fultera Banoo Karim (mother)

Shahidun Nessa Rahman (Bengali: শহীদুন নেসসা রহমান; née Karim Bengali: করিম; born 14 December 1971), commonly known by her pseudonym Shahida Rahman, is an award-winning English author, writer and publisher. She is best known as the author of Lascar.

Early life[edit]

Rahman was born in Mill Road Maternity Hospital, Mill Road, Cambridge, and brought up in Cambridge, Cambridgeshire, England.[1] She is of Bangladeshi descent[2] and both her parents are from Fenchuganj, Sylhet Division. Her late father, Abdul Karim,.[3] was orphaned at a young age[1] and moved to Cambridge from East Pakistan (now Bangladesh) in 1957 and her mother, Fultera Banoo Karim, arrived in 1963.[3] Rahman has a twin sister and three older brothers, and her father was a restaurateur.[1]

Writing career[edit]

Rahman writes historical fiction, non-fiction and short stories.[3] Since 2003, Rahman has been a freelance writer.[3] In April 2005, she launched Perfect Publishers Ltd, a print-on-demand book publishing company providing a range of services for authors and other publishers.[4]

In June 2005, her first book Ibrahim – Where in the Spectrum Does He Belong? was published, which is memoir about her son who grew up with a learning disorder.[3] In June 2012, her first historical novel Lascar was published by Indigo Dreams Publishing.[5] Lascar was inspired by stories passed down orally through the generations about one of her paternal ancestors who one of the early lascars (sailor/seaman from East India) to work aboard the British steamships of the 19th century.[6][7][8][9][10] It was shortlisted for the Muslim Writers Awards, Unpublished Novel Award in 2008 and longlisted for the Brit Writers Unpublished Award in 2010.[5]

In 2009, she was commissioned to write a radio play for the Lascar Heritage Project[11] for Silsila Productions[12] which aired in 2011.[5] In 2010, she co-wrote the screenplay India Ink with American screenwriter Halle Eavelyn which was based on Rahman's short story Homecoming. In 2011, India Ink was shortlisted for the Circalit First Draft Contest and reached the finals of the WriteMovies International Writing Contest.[11]

She wrote The Integration of the Hijab into Police Uniforms which was published in the Behind the Hijab anthology, in March 2009 by Monsoon Press.[11]

Other works of Rahman include: The Integration of the Hijab into Police Uniforms, The Lascar (radio play), and short stories and articles: Currying Favour, Backbone of the Fleet, The Life of Lascars Aboard Merchant Ships, Cambridge's first Gurdwara, Bangladeshis Trade Curry for College and Taxis, Baishaki Mela, Asian Women Suffragettes in the 1900's, Travel with Kids, The Middle Child Syndrome and Noor Inayat Khan.[3]

Rahman has contributed to and been published in the Best of British,[5] The Great War and SISTERS magazines, Asian World Newspaper,[3] Children of the New Earth, The Huffington Post and BBC Radio Cambridgeshire. She was a columnist at Weekly Desh newspaper.[4]

Rahman is currently working on her second historical novel about an Indian Ayah.[3] Since 2014, she has been on the judging panel of the Young Muslim Writers Awards.

Rahman is the former presenter of 'Book Reviews' at online TV channel LB24tv.

Political career[edit]

In May 2015, Rahman was a Liberal Democrat council candidate for East Chesterton ward in the Cambridge City Council election prior to the general election. She received 1,165 votes and lost to the Labour Party candidate who had 1,630 votes.[13]

In May 2016, Rahman was a Liberal Democrat prospective councillor candidate for East Chesterton ward for the second time in the Cambridge City Council election. She received 906 votes, a swing of 6% of votes compared to 2015. She lost to the Labour Party candidate who had 1,103 votes.[14]

Awards and nominations[edit]

In April 2013, Rahman was awarded a Channel S 'Special Acknowledgement Award' for her work drawing attention to the forgotten Bangladeshi cultural history and heritage. In January 2015, she was awarded the Arts and Culture Awareness award at the British Muslim Awards.[15][16] In March 2015, Rahman's company Perfect Publishers was shortlisted for the Media and Arts category at the first British Bangladeshi Business Awards.

Personal life[edit]

In 1990, at the age of 18, Rahman got married.[1] She has three sons Ibrahim, Imran, Aniq and a daughter, Aminah.[3]

Rahman has been most influenced by fellow authors; Rabina Khan[6]


Year Title Credit Publisher ISBN
2005 Ibrahim – Where in the Spectrum Does He Belong?[17] Author Perfect Publishers Ltd 978-1905399055
2009 Behind the Hijab Editor Monsoon Press 978-0955726712
2012 Lascar Author Indigo Dreams Publishing 978-1907401718

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d Rahman, Shahida (10 April 2017). "What Makes Me The Person I Am Today?". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 1 June 2017.
  2. ^ "Shahida Rahman". the Hilary Johnson Authors' Advisory Service. Retrieved 1 August 2014.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i Karim, Mohammed Abdul; Karim, Shahadoth (October 2013). British Bangladeshi Who's Who (PDF). British Bangla Media Group. p. 34. Retrieved 1 September 2014.
  4. ^ a b "Shahida Rahman". Retrieved 1 August 2014.
  5. ^ a b c d "About". Shahida Rahman. Retrieved 1 August 2014.
  6. ^ a b Vajpeyi, Yogesh (24 March 2013). "'Subject of lascars is under-represented in the UK'". India: The Indian Express. Retrieved 1 August 2014.
  7. ^ Ali, Amber (14 June 2012). "BOOKS: Lascar by Shahida Rahman". Asian Image. Retrieved 1 August 2014.
  8. ^ "Britain's first Asian immigrant issue: Lascars". Asian Culture Vulture. Retrieved 1 September 2014.
  9. ^ Hamilton, Keith (6 August 2012). "The forgotten men of maritime history" (PDF). Hampshire: Southern Daily Echo. p. 17. Retrieved 1 September 2014.
  10. ^ Alam, Farkrul (26 July 2013). "A Sylheti in Nineteenth Century London". Bangladesh: The Daily Star. Retrieved 1 September 2014.
  11. ^ a b c "Shahida Rahman". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 1 August 2014.
  12. ^ "The Lascar Project". Silsila Productions. Retrieved 1 August 2014.
  13. ^ "Local elections 2015: Cambridge City Council results and analysis". Cambridge: Cambridge News. 8 May 2015. Retrieved 13 May 2015.
  14. ^ Vale, Jon (6 May 2016). "Cambridge City Council elections 2016 - results as they come in". Cambridge: Cambridge News. Retrieved 1 April 2017.
  15. ^ "British Muslim Awards 2015 finalists unveiled". Asian Image. 23 January 2015. Retrieved 1 August 2015.
  16. ^ "British Muslim awards". Asian World. 17 February 2015. Retrieved 1 August 2015.
  17. ^ "Ibrahim Where in the Spectrum Does He Belong?". Goodreads. 11 June 2005. Retrieved 1 August 2014.

External links[edit]