• Voices on Trial in Al-Maqāmāt Al-Aswāniyyah

    Author(s):
    Matthew Chovanec (see profile)
    Date:
    2023
    Subject(s):
    Arabic literature
    Item Type:
    Article
    Tag(s):
    ʻAbbās al-Aswānī, maqāmāt, Arabic literary history, linguistic narratology
    Permanent URL:
    https://doi.org/10.17613/tfsj-gf38
    Abstract:
    Al-Maqāmāt Al-Aswāniyyah (1970) are a collection of modern maqāmāt featuring a cast of characters from Cairo’s literary scene in the late 1960s. Written by the Egyptian lawyer and author ʻAbbās al-Aswānī (1926-1978), they were a casual and contemporary iteration of the genre, depicting everything from nightlife to Nasserism. They were so modern, in fact, that they were even adapted as a radio serial for Ṣawt Al-ʿArab. But despite these maqāmāt’s stylistic distance from their belletrist predecessors, and without recourse to a stereotypical use of the Egyptian dialect, al-Aswānī performs a satisfying linguistic satire worthy of the genre. Pushing back against common folk-linguistic understandings of the carnivalesque, this article looks to new work in linguistics and narratology as a way to explain how al-Aswānī’s casual, radio-friendly Maqāmāt still honor the genre’s tradition of performing multi-tiered parody, social satire, and metaliterary irony.
    Metadata:
    Status:
    Published
    Last Updated:
    7 months ago
    License:
    Attribution

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