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Laachir, Karima (2016) 'The aesthetics and politics of ‘reading together’ Moroccan novels in Arabic and French.' Journal of North African Studies, 21 (1). pp. 22-36.

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This paper attempts to break down the common practices of reading multilingual Moroccan novels, particularly Moroccan postcolonial novels in Arabic and French. I argue that dominant reading practices are based on binary oppositions marked by a reductionist understanding of language and cultural politics in Morocco. They place the Moroccan novel in Arabic and French in independent traditions with the presupposition that they have no impact on each other, thereby reifying each tradition. They also ignore the similar historical, social and cultural context from which these novels emerge, and tend to reinforce the marginalisation of the Moroccan novel within hegemonic single-language literary systems such as the Francophone or Arabic literary traditions. I advocate ‘reading together’ – or an entangled comparative reading of – postcolonial Moroccan novels in Arabic and French, a reading that privileges the specificity of the literary traditions in Morocco rather than language categorisation, and that considers their mutual historical, cultural, geographical, political, and aesthetic interweaving and implications.

Item Type: Journal Article
Additional Information: First published online: 23 December 2015.
SOAS Departments & Centres: Legacy Departments > Faculty of Languages and Cultures > Department of the Languages and Cultures of the Near and Middle East
ISSN: 13629387
Copyright Statement: © 2015 Taylor & Francis. This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Journal of North African Studies on 15 Sep 2015, available online:
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 14 Mar 2016 15:09

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