KĀBOL, a monthly magazine with the full title Kābol:ʿElmi, adabi, ejtemāʿi, tariḵi. The periodical was founded by the Kabul Literary Society (Anjoman-e Adabi-e Kābol), and the first issue appeared on 15 Jawzā 1310 Š./5 May 1931. In 1940, the Kabul Literary Society was replaced by the Pashto Society (Pašto ṭōlana) to support the monarchy’s efforts to establish Pashto as the national language of Afghanistan. The Pashto Society continued to publish Kābol, which during its first decade had established itself as an important cultural magazine. From 1931 until 1978, 693 issues of Kābol’s Persian edition appeared in print (see holdings in the Baverian State Library, Munich), but few precise numbers are available for the Pashto edition, which was first published in 1940. The Pashto edition seems only to have ceased publication during the political turmoil of the 1990s, and in 2004 it was relaunched as a scholarly journal by the Department of Languages and Literatures at the Academy of Sciences of Afghanistan.

The first issue of Kābol was edited by the poet Moḥammad Anvar Besmel (1887-1961), who later also served as the society’s secretary. Early issues comprised 40-60 pages, and from its third year onwards, each issue had about 120 pages. The high quality of Kābol’s articles attracted the attention of a large Afghan audience. The magazine introduced its readers to the canonical figures and texts of classical Persian literature as well as to important personalities of Afghan Persian literature. It also published scholarly articles, in Persian, about Pashto language and literature. But the magazine also offered articles about history, geography, archeology, folklore, educational psychology, and philosophy. In 1940, as the journal became an exclusively Pashto publication, only a handful of the original contributors, such as Gol-Pāčā Olfat (b. 1909), ʿAbd-al-Raʿūf Binavā (1913-85), and Ṣeddiq-Allāh Reštin (b. 1919), continued to write for the magazine.



ʿAli Reżavi-Ḡaznavi,Naṯr-e Dari-e Afḡānestān: Si qeṣṣa, Tehran, 1978, pp. 46-47.

Moḥammad Ḥaydar Žobal,Tāʾriḵ-e adabiyāt-e Afḡānestān, Kabul, 1957, p. 166.

(Wali Ahmadi)

Originally Published: September 15, 2009

Last Updated: April 19, 2012

This article is available in print.
Vol. XV, Fasc. 3, p. 276