Must-read Classics by Women: Latifa al-Zayyat’s ‘The Open Door’

An excerpt Hoopoe Fiction has an excerpt from the novel on their website. Instead, Layla begins as a strong character, is ground down, and then must put herself back together again. When I get bigger I’ll show those Englishmen! She used non-literary language not just in the book’s dialogue, but also in interior monologues and

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Of Beastly Times

My grandmother’s home is fast becoming a relic, a reminder of both the inconveniences and the bucolic majesty of bygone days. “We kicked them out in 1947,” one of the Gujjar women says when I ask if there is a strong Muslim community in Himachal. Once the pandit locates a distant cousin of my father’s,

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The Fictions of Documentary: An Interview with Charles Fairbanks

The baby was going to be the male main character, though she’s actually a girl, played by Saul’s daughter. So we kept up with Juan, and indeed, an interesting story emerged. The Modern Jungle destabilizes not only the myth of the untouched native community, but also the myth of documentary film. Saul’s project started as

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What If Your Mother Were a MILF?: Love, Sex, and Loneliness in Tom Perrotta’s “Mrs. Fletcher”

Eve enrolls in a sexuality class at Eastern Community College titled “Gender and Society: A Critical Perspective.” The class wasn’t her first choice, but other classes filled up quickly. His classes aren’t going well. In the second and alternating chapters, Brendan’s experience is narrated in the first person. Fletcher. He expected to get laid every

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Badriyah Albeshr’s ‘Thursday’s Visitors’: A New Translation by Sawad Hussein

She’s also an Arabic translator and litterateur who holds a MA in Modern Arabic Literature from the School of Oriental and African Studies. They named her father ‘The Wet One’ – to wit, the water tanker! She suspected that her father had known all along what would happen and yet he planned her goodbye party,

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Squishy Sentience

The poet Ogden Nash was pithy in his summary of the octopus’s charms: Tell me, O Octopus, I begs, Is those things arms, or is they legs? Is the brain a kind of CEO, directing the body to do its bidding, which would mean that executing more complex shapes is a form of higher intelligence?

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The Ineradicable Color-Line: Danzy Senna’s “New People”

Perhaps the most famous text to deal with racial passing is Nella Larsen’s Passing (1929), but the specter of passing is everywhere in American literature, notably in novels by Mark Twain and William Faulkner; in Ralph Ellison’s Invisible Man, a kind of anti-passing novel, the unnamed narrator cannot pass for white and is thus, as

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For ‘Women in Translation’ Month, 8 New or Forthcoming Books by Arab Women

It was the fate of such men to be twice exiled, first in their homeland after the war, and later in France, where fleeing Harki families sought refuge but instead faced contempt, discrimination, and exclusion. It is a relentless, sometimes wistful, sometimes bitter, often raging but always incisive critique…from what one could call a proto-feminist

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Mass-Produced Identity

Similarly, and each in different ways, the narrators in Kangaroo Notebook and ME are stripped of this sense of permanence. Hitoshi/Daiki says, “I felt the pressure to jump on the victims myself. He feels them undergo a metamorphosis. They allow themselves, their very identities, to become mass produced. His specific approach to identity also seems

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2017 Arab American Book Awards Announced: 3 Big Names, 1 Debut Novel

7 at the museum, which is in Dearborn, Michigan. A complete list of winners and honorable mentions: WINNER: Fiction Award The Angel of History By Rabih Alameddine HONORABLE MENTION: Fiction 13 Ways of Looking at a Fat Girl By Mona Awad WINNER: Evelyn Shakir Non-Fiction Award Inter/Nationalism: Decolonizing Native America and Palestine By Steven Salaita

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Game of Thrones, “The Queen’s Justice”

It was rich and interesting because it was so overdetermined and long-awaited, and it went so surprisingly, stupidly, irrevocably badly. Olenna’s last joust was, as always, a pleasure—as was the decisiveness with which she drank down that wine, because people being decisive is the best thing on Game of Thrones—but the most narratively satisfying piece

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The Fallacy of “The Turning Point” — A Critical Look at Mark Bowden’s History of the Battle of Huế

The vivid but flawed result is Huế 1968: A Turning Point of the American War in Vietnam, a 500-plus-page tome on the fighting inside a single city during the 1968 Tet Offensive. They influence morale of armies. Too often, Americans paint their enemies with such broad strokes as to erase their very sense of humanity.

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‘Excellence of the Arabs’: Ibn Qutaybah and the Cultural Authority of Poetry

Peter Webb: Very early on, Arabs became associated with being producers of poetry. Sometimes, he would just cite lines of poetry to show an existence of a word in the past, and you’re to infer from this that the word could not have existed unless the Arabs had been thinking about language in a very

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The Internet Wars Come to Print

Several of the figures Nagle herself cites as examples of the transgressive in 19th- and 20th-century literature — Nietzsche, Dostoyevsky, Georges Bataille — were figures of the broad European right. Joseph de Maistre, the arch-reactionary French philosopher who did as much as to define the counterrevolutionary movement after 1789 as anyone, including Burke, lingered lovingly

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“I Write on Human Skin”: Catherine the Great and the Rule of Law

Scarcely had she ascended to the throne when she sent a generous amount of money to the family of Jean Calas, a victim of religious fanaticism in France. Voltaire’s campaign enthralled Catherine. Yet the result, as Catherine’s biographer Isabel de Madariaga rightly claims, was “one of the most remarkable political treatises ever compiled and published

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Dialectic of Dark Enlightenments: The Alt-Right’s Place in the Culture Industry

Nagle argues convincingly that the most prolific actors on the alt-right and the alt-light have been great students of the culture wars, but not in the way we might think. Yiannopoulos’s eventual downfall captures all the irony of a right-wing outrage dandy trying to cozy up to an Evangelical Christian forefather he called “Daddy.” Yiannopoulos’s

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Not with a Bang, but a Retweet: The Rise of the Alt-Right

In 2006, by contrast, Jack Dorsey, Twitter’s founding chief executive officer, sent this: “just setting up my twttr.” One wishes, in retrospect, that Dorsey had followed Morse’s lead. (Okay, they also sent strippers.) But many were far more sinister, especially those dreamed up by users of the site’s /b/ message board, where mocking suicide victims

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