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Published by the Haus der Kulturen der Welt, 2004
Text in German
Softcover, 114 pages
Price: € 7
Out of print, possibly available in antiquarian bookshops. Book on zvab.com
The polyphony of the Arab Near East is overwhelming. The themes of this literature, presented here for the first time in German translation, are shaped by the specific experiences of the authors from Lebanon and Iraq, Jordan and Palestine. Elias Khoury, the famous Lebanese intellectual and politically committed cultural critic, leads them, describing in his novel “Das Sonnentor” (Gate of the Sun) the life of Palestinian refugees, thus taking up the motif of exile—the central theme of all the authors presented here. While Zakaria Mohammed's novel “Alpenveilchen” (Cyclamen) presents the reality of life in today's Ramallah, Najwa Barakat investigates in “O Salam” memory and cultural heritage in Lebanon. The strongly expressive scenes from the novels and poems tell the reader stories of people who either want to liberate their lives from or must accommodate themselves to given constraints.