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The Body In Arabic Love Poetry: The Udhri Tradition [Paperback-2023]
Jokha Alharthi

Releasing 30-Sep-2023 - Available on release

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Category:Literary CriticismLiterary CriticismLiterary Criticism-Cri
Publisher: Edinburgh University | ISBN: 9781474486347 | Pages: 288

Jokha Alharthi re-appraises the relationship between love, poetry and Arab society in the 8th to 11th centuries. She avoids familiar clichés about the purity of love in ‘Udhri poetry – broadly speaking, an Arabic counterpart to the western medieval concept of unconsummated courtly love – and instead questions the traditional much-vaunted emphasis on chastity and the assumption that this poetry omits any concept of the body. Alharthi focuses on the key differences between what the poetry itself says and the views of later sources about ‘Udhri poets and their works. She also documents how the representation of the beloved in the ‘Udhri ghazal was influenced by pre-Islamic poetry, showing how this tradition developed with a series of overlapping historical layers. And she breaks new ground by examining how this poetry treats not only the body of the beloved but also that of her lover, the poet himself.

About the Author

Jokha Alharthi is Associate Professor of Classical Arabic Literature in Sultan Qaboos University. She is the author of several short story collections and novels, including Celestial Bodies, winner of the Man Booker International Prize 2019.

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