"This anthology offers a rich and diverse selection of works from more than one hundred and forty prominent Arab writers of fiction. The collection reflects Arab writers' formal inventiveness as well as their intense exploration of various dimensions of modern Arab life, including the impact of modernity, the rise of the oil economy, political authoritarianism, corruption, religion, poverty, and the Palestinian diaspora." "Salma Khadra Jayyusi, a renowned scholar of Arabic literature, has included short stories and excerpts from novels from authors in every Arab country. Modern Arabic Fiction contains writings stretching from the pioneering work of late-nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century authors to the novels of Naguib Mahfouz and the stories of contemporary Arab writers. In addition to familiar names such as Mahfouz, the anthology presents excerpts from writers well known in the Arab world but just beginning to find an audience in the West, including early-twentieth-century writer Jurji Zaydan, whose historical epics influenced the moral attitudes of several generations of Arab readers; Yusuf Idris's complex and brilliant portraits of Egypt's poor; 'Abd al-Rahman Munif's searing exploration of the ecological and social impact of oil production; and Palestinian writer Ibrahim Nasrallah's bold postmodern examination of alienation in contemporary Arab life." "Jayyusi provides biographical information on the writers as well as a substantial introduction to the development of modern Arabic fictional genres that considers the central thematic and aesthetic concerns of Arab short story writers and novelists."--BOOK JACKET.
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