Between Longing and Belonging



Year of publication 2019
Type Appeared in Conference without Proceedings
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Arts

Description This paper explores the intersections of tradition and modernity in the literatures of the Mediterranean, focusing on the works of Arab writers. Having internalised Western forms, modern Arabic literature derives its identity from situating itself within the Arabic literary heritage, particularly within the tradition of Arabic storytelling. Drawing on the material that is both classical and modern, the works discussed employ the classical Arabic literary strategies in order to produce narratives that mirror the creative tensions between tradition and modernity, between the two opposing desires to decolonise on one hand, and to modernize on the other. The paper provides close readings of the novels through which the complex relationships of authenticity, modernity and originality, rootedness in tradition and attempts at innovation are explored and analysed.
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