Skip to main content
CODE 61275
ACADEMIC YEAR 2024/2025
CREDITS
SCIENTIFIC DISCIPLINARY SECTOR L-OR/12
LANGUAGE Italian
TEACHING LOCATION
  • GENOVA
SEMESTER Annual
TEACHING MATERIALS AULAWEB

OVERVIEW

Arabic Literature II aims to address some of the main themes of modern and contemporary Arabic literature: the Nahḍa period, the continuity of some traditional literary genres as well as the emergence and the affirmation of others such as the novel and the short story. Special focus will be given to the evolution of the novel in Egypt and other countries in relation to the crucial events that have shaped the modern and contemporary history of the Arab world and in particular to the process of decolonization, to Arab migrations and to the encounter/clash with other civilizations, as well as to the political and sociocultural changes in the second half of the 20th century.

 

This is a one-year course (54 hours - 9 CFU) and is divided into two teaching parts.

Students who choose Arabic literature II worth 6 CFU are required to take the second part only which will be held in the second semester.

AIMS AND CONTENT

LEARNING OUTCOMES

- It intends to provide an overview of the main narrative trends in the twentieth century in relation to the political and socio-cultural evolution, analyse the most representative and relevant themes, authors and works of that period, as well as identify their specificity in the modern and contemporary Arabic literary context.

AIMS AND LEARNING OUTCOMES

This module aims to:

  • provide students with basic knowledge of modern Arabic literature, their main literary trends and texts;
  • offer students methodological knowledge and critical thinking that enable the understanding of other authors and works from the same period;
  • develop analytical and interpretation skills;
  • broaden the knowledge of lexicon, phraseology and syntactic structures of Standard Arabic through the reading and analysis of some passages in original language;
  • encourage students to reflect on literary, cultural and socio-political issues.

- At the end of the course the student will:

  • have an in-depth knowledge of the historical, political and literary context which characterised the Arab world in the 19th and 20th centuries;
  • know the main trends, authors and texts of modern Arabic and Egyptian literatures;
  • be able to identify texts in the context of the history of Arabic literature, to link them to historical events, and other works and authors;
  • be able to analyse the themes and the stylistic features of the literary texts dealt with;
  • acquire the specialised literary, historical and political lexicon related to the topics discussed in the course.

TEACHING METHODS

Lectures and seminars. Texts and audiovisual materials, such as films and documentaries, will be provided in class. Students will be asked to participate in class discussions, to read and comment on several texts, both in Italian and in Arabic, as well as to prepare summaries and oral presentations.

The lessons will be held in the first semester according to the university teaching timetable.

SYLLABUS/CONTENT

This is a one-year course (54 hours - 9 CFU) and is divided into two teaching parts.

Students who choose Arabic literature II worth 6 CFU are required to take only the second part which will be held in the second semester.

1. Part I (18 hours in the first semester):

- Introduces the historical, cultural and literary context of the nahḍa period. Particular attention will be paid to the literary elements of continuity and rupture with the classical and pre-modern periods, to the nahḍa pioneers and their works; and to the role of the press and translations in the literary and cultural "renaissance".

- Includes reading in the Arabic language and the analysis of some passages taken from:

  • Taḫlīṣ al-ibrīz ilā talḫīs Bārīz (The Extraction of Gold or an Overview of Paris) by Rifā‘a al-Ṭahṭāwī (d. 1873);
  • al-Sāq ‘alà al-sāq fī mā huwa al-Fāryāq (Leg over Leg) by Fāris al-Šidyāq (d. 1887);
  • Ḥadīṯ ‘Īsà ibn Hishām aw fatra min al zaman (What ʿĪsā ibn Hishām told us) by Muḥammad al Muwayliḥī (d. 1930).

- Covers the historical-literary context of the Arab world at the beginning of the twentieth century, the rise of the novel and the short story, particularly in Egypt.

The following works will be analysed:

  • Zaynab by Muḥammad Ḥusayn Haykal (d. 1956);
  • Fī l-qiṭār (By train) by Muḥammad Taymūr (d. 1921);
  • ‘Ammī Mitwallī by Maḥmūd Taymūr (d. 1973);
  • Ḥadīṯ al-qarya (Village small talk) by Maḥmūd Ṭāhir Lāšīn (d. 1954).

 

2. Part II (36 hours in the second semester):

-This module examines the evolution of the novel in Egypt and other Arab countries in relation to the crucial events that have shaped the contemporary history of the Arab world. It particularly focuses on the processes of decolonization, the Arab-Israeli conflict, the crises of post-colonial regimes, Arab migrations, the encounter and clash with other civilizations, as well as the political and socio-cultural changes in the Arab world during the second half of the 20th century.

- The following works will be covered:

  • Qindīl Umm Hāšim (The Lamp of Umm Hashim - 1944) by Yaḥyā Ḥaqqī (Egypt);
  • Riǧāl fī l-šams (Men in the Sun 1963) by Ġassān Kanafānī (Palestine);
  • Mawsim al-hiğrah ilà al-šamāl  (Season of Migration to the North 1967) by al-Ṭayyib Ṣāliḥ (Sudan);
  • al-Ḫubz al-ḥāfī (For Bread Alone 1972) by Muḥammad Šukrī (Morocco);
  • Bayrūt ’75 (Bayrut 75 - 1975) by Ġāda Sammān (Ghada Samman) (Syria);
  • Sāq al-Bambū (The Bamboo Stalk 2012) by Sa‘ūd al-San‘ūsī (Kuwait).

N.B .: Students must read at least two works of their choice (novels or anthologies of short stories or poems), translated from Arabic into Italian or English, and must be able to present and analyse them in depth in the exam.

- The syllabus is the same for non-attending students. Bibliographical material and texts covered during the course will be available on Aulaweb.

RECOMMENDED READING/BIBLIOGRAPHY

  • Isabella Camera d’Afflitto, Letteratura araba contemporanea. Dalla nahdah a oggi, Carocci, Roma, 2007;
  • Isabella Camera d’Aflitto, Scrittori arabi del Novecento, Bompiani, Milano, 2002;
  • Toelle H., Zakaria K., Alla scoperta della letteratura araba. Dal vi secolo ai nostri giorni. Argo, Lecce, 2010;
  • Avino M, Camera d’Afflitto I, Salem A. (ed.), Antologia della letteratura araba contemporanea, Carocci, Roma, 2015;
  • Starkey, Paul, Modern Arabic Literature, Edinburgh University Press, Edinburgh, 2006.

TEACHERS AND EXAM BOARD

Exam Board

NASSER AHMED ISMAIL AHMED (President)

LESSONS

LESSONS START

The lessons will be held in the first semester, according to the following timetable:

EXAMS

EXAM DESCRIPTION

Oral examination: the examination will last approx. 15 minutes for each student. It will consist of a number of questions on the various topics dealt with during the course, regarding the history and the most important genres, authors and works in modern Arabic literature, and particularly Egyptian.

ASSESSMENT METHODS

The student’s learning will be evaluated based on a clear, accurate and comprehensive presentation of the historical and literary topics of the course. The student's ability to place the movements, authors and texts in the history of modern and contemporary Arabic literature as well as their ability to analyse the works chosen will also be evaluated.

FURTHER INFORMATION

Students who have valid certification of physical or learning disabilities on file with the University and who wish to discuss possible accommodations or other circumstances regarding lectures, coursework and exams, should speak both with the lecturer and with Prof. Sara Dickinson (sara.dickinson@unige.it), the Department’s disability liaison.

Agenda 2030 - Sustainable Development Goals

Agenda 2030 - Sustainable Development Goals
No poverty
No poverty
Quality education
Quality education
Gender equality
Gender equality
Reduce inequality
Reduce inequality
Peace, justice and strong institutions
Peace, justice and strong institutions