Rehan Ansari
Birds That Swim
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Unburdened is set in the time around President Obama's inauguration when Robin, a journalist from Toronto, goes to Karachi. Robin becomes consumed with our inability to truly comprehend what it is to live inside a war. He glimpses our enemy's point of view: We see an argument for militancy that has a global audience. We observe Robin's struggles through his partner Katherine's eyes as he feverishly communicates with her over the phone and Skype. In Karachi Robin stays with Attiya and Saad, his elderly aunt and uncle who have lived with a terrible secret over the course of their 60-year relationship that began amidst the Partition of India. Robin also meets Nazia, a young Pakistani musician. Robin's time in Pakistan brings a dramatic focus to Robin and Katherine's mixed heritage family history (his mother is Pakistani, her father is Jewish).