Literature, Journalism And the Avant-garde Intersection in Egypt

Literature, Journalism And the Avant-garde Intersection in Egypt
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  • ISBN-13: 9780415385619
  • ISBN: 041538561X
  • Publication Date: 2006
  • Publisher: Routledge


Kendall, Elisabeth


Journalism played a role of unparalleled importance in the evolution of modern literary forms and techniques in Arabic. Literature, Journalism and the Avant-Garde explores the role of journalism in Egypt in shaping the development of modern Arabic literature from its inception in the mid-nineteenth century to the present day. This book seeks to re-map the Egyptian literary scene over recent decades by focusing on the independent, frequently dissident, journals that became the real hotbed of an innovative literary activity inflected by politics as censorship and licensing laws drove experimentation underground. It is in this context that the journal became, paradoxically, the 'traditional' forum for innovative literature. Using a broad range of original Arabic sources read against avant-garde theory and Bourdieu's theory of fields, the author shows how the journal became the life-blood of a whole literary sub-field able to operate (semi-) autonomously of establishment institutions. It is the vibrant dynamic powered by literary journalism and the dialectic between literary margin and mainstream that this book seeks to reconstruct. While broad in historical scope, Literature, Journalism and the Avant-Garde emphasizes the enduring influence of the 'sixties generation' - the subject of increasing scholarly interest - and the pivotal role of the avant-garde journal Gallery 68 in fostering a sense of literary modernism in Egyptian and, to a larger extent, Arabic fiction. Elisabeth Kendall studied and researched at Oxford and Harvard Universities. Her core research interests lie in twentieth century Arabic and Turkish literature, especially experimental movements. She is a lecturer in Arabic and Turkish at Edinburgh University. Middle East Studies/Literature/HistoryKendall, Elisabeth is the author of 'Literature, Journalism And the Avant-garde Intersection in Egypt', published 2006 under ISBN 9780415385619 and ISBN 041538561X.

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