Modern Arabic Literature

cover art
232 pp., 6 x 9
ISBN: 9781589011342 (1589011341)

232 pp., 6 x 9
ISBN: 9781589011359 (158901135X)

August 2006
LC: 2006007879
Sales Rights: Only for saled in the U.S. and Canada


Table of Contents

Modern Arabic Literature
Paul Starkey

In this succinct introduction to modern Arabic literature of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, Paul Starkey traces its development from the medieval Arabic literary tradition—beginning in the sixth-century with nomadic Bedouin poetry and the Qur'an—through new literary forms adapted from Western imaginative literature. He explores the interaction between social, political, and cultural change in the Middle East and northern Africa and the development of a modern Arabic literary tradition.

From the early nineteenth century through World War I, the Western genres of poetry, the novel, short story, and drama reached various parts of the Arabic-speaking world. Starkey discusses the resultant evolution of Arabic literature in separate sections on poetry, prose writing, and the theatre in Egypt, the Levant, Iraq, and northern Africa, from early contact through the emergence of women's literary voices in the 1960s to contemporary writers.

Arabic terms are presented in transcription, and an extensive bibliography provides suggestions for further reading. Modern Arabic Literature is the perfect introduction for readers interested in the contemporary Middle East or in comparative, colonial, world, or modern literature.

Paul Starkey is senior lecturer in Arabic at the University of Durham. He is coeditor (with Julie Meisami) of the Encyclopedia of Arabic Literature.

"A well organized, clearly written and argued survey of Arabic's modern literary tradition. Starkey's coverage of each genre and stage of development is excellent. His extensive knowledge and scholarship in the field is evident."—Roger Allen, professor of Arabic language and literature, The University of Pennsylvania

Table of Contents
Note on abbreviations

Preface and acknowledgements

Introduction: what is Modern Arabic literature?

1. The background

2. The revival

3. Neo-classical poetry

4. Romanticism in Arabic poetry

5. Poetry: the Modernists

6. Prose literature: early developments

7. Prose literature: the period of maturity

8. The sixties generation and beyond

9. Drama: early experiments

10. The period of maturity

11. Conclusion