|Biographical detail : || An Indian writer.
Attia was the first woman of her background to obtain a university degree in Indian sub-continent. She came to England with her family in 1947 when the euphoria of India’s independence that year was accompanied by grief at the partition.
Attia, a meticulous stylist, wrote with equal ease about the underclass and the aristocratic Muslim milieu to which she belonged. In her only novel Sunlight on a Broken Column (1961) she charted in retrospect the course of an educated Muslim woman’s life, and the passing of the old aristocratic order with classical austerity. Despite her cosmopolitanism, she was passionate about her roots and her creative directions as diverse cultural strands enriched writer, broadcaster and actress. To the end of her life, she retained a fierce iconoclastic political consciousness and was scornful of hypocrisy, extremism and sectarianism.
Attia Hosain Habibullah was born in Lucknow into Kidwai family, a feudal land-owning clan of Oudh.