A young Pakistani-American struggles to identify both as Muslim and American.
In the second part of today's Up to Date, Steve Kraske talks with Ayad Akhtar about his debut novel American Dervish. As a first-generation American himself, Akhtar discusses how much of himself he put in this story of a young man. They look at devotion to faith and the sometimes tragic implications of extremism.
HEAR MORE: Ayad Akhtar speaks this evening at St. Paul's Episcopal Day School at 7 p.m. For more information, call Rainy Day Books at (913) 384-3126 or visit their website.
Aktar is also the author of Disgraced, which premiered at American Theater Company in Chicago and will start previews at Lincoln Center Oct. 7.
Ayad Akhtar earned a degrees in theater from Brown University and in directing from Columbia University. He has taught acting on his own and alongside Andre Gregory (My Dinner With Andre, Vanya on 42nd St).
He co-wrote and played the lead role in The War Within, which premiered at the 2005 Toronto Film Festival. His latest stage plays are Disgraced (Lincoln Center) and The Invisible Hand (The Repertory Theater of St Louis).
American Dervish, his first novel, was released in 22 languages worldwide.