Discipline: Literature – nonfiction

Samira Shackle

Discipline: Literature – nonfiction
Region: London, UK
MacDowell Fellowships: 2019

Samira Shackle is a freelance writer and reporter based in London. She writes long-form narrative features that focus on the human impact of major world events. She is currently deputy editor at the New Humanist, a quarterly magazine of ideas, and a regular contributor to the Guardian Long Read. For the past eight years, she has reported regularly from Pakistan, her mother’s homeland, covering stories from the Taliban’s attack on polio vaccinators to the army’s harsh repression of a civil rights group. Samira has also reported from the UK, the Middle East and Africa, with a particular focus on religious extremism and minority groups. She has twice been a media fellow with Columbia University’s Centre for the Study of Social Difference; in 2016 she was awarded the Times’ Richard Beeston bursary for foreign reporting; and in 2018 she won the inaugural Portobello Prize with the proposal for her first book.

At MacDowell, she completed the manuscript for that book, Karachi Vice. A work of narrative non-fiction, Karachi Vice was published by Granta. It tells the story of five ordinary citizens of Pakistan's largest city, and their lives amidst urban conflict.

Made at MacDowell

Fellow Works Supported by MacDowell

Karachi Vice (Non-Fiction Book)



Samira Shackle worked in the Sorosis studio.

Sorosis Studio was funded by the New York Carol Club of Sorosis. The small, masonry studio was designed by F. Winsor, Jr., the architect who also designed Savidge Library (1926) and Mixter Studio (1927). At the time of construction, the large porch on the southeast façade offered a spectacular mountain view that has since been obscured…

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