Alif 42

Literature Confronting Mortality

Edited by Walid El Hamamsy

A wide-ranging, multi-disciplinary collection of essays that decenter, critique, and problematize predominant notions of the meaning of mortality for

English edition
1 March 2023
576 pp.
16.5X24cm
ISBN 9781649032362
For sale worldwide

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A wide-ranging, multi-disciplinary collection of essays that decenter, critique, and problematize predominant notions of the meaning of mortality for human creativity

This issue of Alif explores the ways in which humans have come to confront their mortality across time and space. Contributions question the nature of loss, grief, and the possibility of an afterlife. Is death only an interlude? Perhaps simply the end? How have people used literature and the arts to conceptualize its relentless presence in our existence?

The articles in this issue decenter, critique, and problematize predominant notions of the meaning of mortality for human creativity. They provide a wide scope of responses to mortality, anthropologically, philosophically, and psychologically. They shed light on different cultural receptions of loss, annihilation, and mortality, ranging from India to Yemen, Palestine to Iraq, the Island of Lampedusa to the war-ravished city of Beirut, among many other locales. Death is dealt with in an intimate fashion through the exploration and reinterpretation of modern and classical elegiac poetry, children’s picturebooks, fictional accounts of war, grief, and displacement, and dramatic treatments of dying and the afterlife.

Contributors:
Hajjaj Abu Jabr, Egyptian Academy of Arts, Cairo, Egypt
Karam AbuSehly, Beni-Suef University, Beni Suef, Egypt
Hala Amin, Beni-Suef University, Beni Suef, Egypt
Shaimaa El-Ateek, Imam Mohammad Ibn Saud Islamic University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Mohamed Birairi, Beni-Suef University, Beni-Suef, Egypt, and American University in Cairo, Cairo, Egypt
Elliott Colla, Georgetown University, Washington, DC, USA
Saeed Elmasry, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt
Shaimaa Gohar, Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt
Walid El Khachab, York University, Toronto, Canada
Yasmine Motawy, American University in Cairo, Cairo, Egypt
Dani Nassif, University of Münster, Münster, Germany
Andrea Maria Negri, Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Munich, Germany
Marwa Ramadan, Zagazig University, Zagazig, Egypt
Caroline Rooney, University of Kent, Kent, United Kingdom
Tania Al Saadi, Stockholm University, Stockholm, Sweden
May Telmissany, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Canada
Shahla Ujayli, American University of Madaba, Madaba, Jordan

Walid El Hamamsy

Walid  El Hamamsy is assistant professor of cultural studies at Cairo University. His academic interests focus on popular culture, comparative literature, translation, and gender. He is co-translator into Arabic of Thomas Jefferson’s Revolutionary Democracy (2011) and co-editor of Popular Culture in the Middle East and North Africa: A Postcolonial Outlook (2013). He lives in Cairo.
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