|Fugitive Colors contains a selection of English translations of Selina Hossain's short stories, ranging from the eighties to the present. The choice, made mainly by the writer herself, gives readers a sense of the writer's social commitment. Keenly aware of the natural beauty of Bangladesh , as in “His Beloved Island” and “Fugitive Colors,” she is also aware of the natural catastrophes and human complicities that destroy this harmony.
Essentially a humanist, she is conscious of the double front on which women have to fight, whether it is Nurjaan in “Double War” fighting against the Pakistani oppressors or Chandana in “The Forestland” fighting against the Bengali oppressors of her beloved hills. A number of stories – “Looking Back” “Fifty,” “Double War,” and “Ceasefire” – are based on important historical events: the Language Movement and the Liberation War.
The writer's feminist concerns are strongly revealed in “Motijan's Daughters” and “Izzat,” while in “Ceasefire” – which is otherwise about the hard lot of the forgotten freedom fighter – she stresses the importance of compatibility in marriage, with husband and wife sharing the same values. Though most of her protagonists in these stories are women, stories like “His Beloved Island,” “Fugitive Colors,” and “Spent” reveal that Selina Hossain is equally adept at weaving her stories around male protagonists.