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Book Title: An Arab Melancholia|
The author of the book: Abdellah Taïa
ISBN 13: 9781584351115
Date of issue: April 2012
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 673 KB
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Reader ratings: 6.6
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An autobiographical portrait of a gay Arab man, living between cultures, seeking an identity through love and writing.
I had to rediscover who I was. And that's why I left the apartment.... And there I was, right in the heart of the Arab world, a world that never tired of making the same mistakes over and over.... I had no more leniency when it came to the Arab world... None for the Arabs and none for myself. I suddenly saw things with merciless lucidity....
-- An Arab Melancholia
Sal', near Rabat. The mid 1980s. A lower-class teenager is running until he's out of breath. He's running after his dream, his dream to become a movie director. He's running after the Egyptian movie star, Souad Hosni, who's out there somewhere, miles away from this neighborhood--which is a place the teenager both loves and hates, the home at which he is not at home, an environment that will only allow him his identity through the cultural lens of shame and silence. Running is the only way he can stand up to the violence that is his Morocco.
Irresistibly charming, angry, and wry, this autobiographical novel traces the emergence of Abdellah Taia's identity as an openly gay Arab man living between cultures. The book spans twenty years, moving from Sal', to Paris, to Cairo. Part incantation, part polemic, and part love letter, this extraordinary novel creates a new world where the self is effaced by desire and love, and writing is always an act of discovery.
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Read information about the authorAbdellah Taïa is a young Moroccan writer born in Salé in 1973. He grew up in a neighborhood called “Hay Salam” located between Salé and Rabat, where his father Mohammed works at the General Library of the capital. His mother M’Barka, an illiterate housewife, gives so much meaning to his days and accompanies his sleep with her nocturnal melodies. This son of a working-class district and second youngest of a household of ten children is the first Moroccan writer to publicly assume his homosexuality.
Abdellah Taïa has been living in Paris since 1999, where he obtained a doctorate in Letters at La Sorbonne University while managing to write 5 books. The last one, called “an Arabian melancholia”, was just published by “Seuil” on March 6th of 2008
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