Urdu has established itself as one of the renowned languages of the subcontinent region of South Asia. The language has a long history when it comes to its development and over a period of time it has managed to inspire people all across the globe in different genres and presents a set of religious, cultural and social values of the Urdu language speakers to the foreigners.
When it comes to different genres of Urdu that are most popular is Urdu poetry. Besides the popular genre of Urdu fiction, the poetry is also of equal importance and all over the world in Urdu language courses, the teaching of poetry is a necessary component. The lines below give a brief introduction of genre of Urdu poetry.
As far as the historical development of the genre is concerned, it is as old as the language Urdu itself. Urdu started becoming a vulgar language during the reign of Mughal emperors. Besides their love for architecture and paintings, the one other thing for which Mughals were renowned was their love for poetry. Thus, although, the language of court was Persian where Mughals would listen to Persian poets, however, at a rustic level, it was the Urdu poetry that was being formed on the same rules and parameters as the Persian poetry. Hence, since Urdu became a language of the masses, it is from then that the Urdu poetry started.
After the initial years, in the 19th century is when Urdu received the greatest of contributions pertaining to Urdu poetry. Besides the other major names that surfaced in Urdu poetry in the 19th century, one of the most prominent names was of Mirza Asadullah Khan Ghalib. He is one of the greatest poets of Urdu language, and his works have been translated into many languages. If Ghalib is taken out of Urdu poetry, then half the poetry ceases to exist.
In the twentieth century also, poetry remained one of the renowned genres of Urdu languages. It was Allama Iqbal in the 20th century who gave a new direction to Urdu poetry and used it as a means of reforms. It was the poetry of Iqbal that revolutionized the whole Muslim population of subcontinent who then formed a spate country of their own called ‘Pakistan’. He is the national poet of Pakistan and his poetry in Urdu is considered a pivotal element for the development of struggle of Pakistan, hence, Iqbal utilized poetry as a medium of bringing and provoking change.
Urdu poetry consists of different forms of which the popular one is Ghazal. Besides Urdu Ghazal, there is Nazam, Marsiya, Rubai and so on. There is substantial amount of literature in each and every form of Urdu poetry, therefore, all the forms are respected and equally accepted amongst the literary circles.
In a nutshell, Urdu has a rich history when it comes to poetry. Besides being used as a means of expressing personal feelings and desires in an aesthetically pleasant way, Urdu poetry has contributed heavily into bringing social reforms among the dwellers of the subcontinent, which shows the kind of power this genre carries.