The Iraqi Novel: Key Writers, Key Texts

Research output: Book/ReportBook

10 Citations (Scopus)


The book aims to answer questions about the development of modern Iraqi fiction, with an emphasis on three writers who started writing in the late 1940s-
early1950s. As well as being an important decade in the history of the country from a socio-political point of view, the 1950s is pivotal from a literary point of view. It was in the course of this decade that fiction began to develop from pioneering experiments to a more mature and consciously artistic form. We will briefly describe the emergence and development of Iraqi fiction prior to this period and identify the prevailing trends, but will examine the maturing of Iraqi fiction mainly through close textual analyses of the novels of Gha’ib Tu’ma Farman, Mahdi Isa al-Saqr and Fu’ad al-Takarli. In these writers’ works the transition is made from a kind of fiction which was mainly concerned with political and social matters to one which, while remaining engaged with society, is formally more adventurous and technically more mature. Moreover, Iraqi fiction in this period appears to have a different orientation towards national identity and the colonial/postcolonial experience from that of, for example, Egyptian or Lebanese fiction.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationEdinburgh
PublisherEdinburgh University Press
Number of pages264
ISBN (Electronic)9780748685257
ISBN (Print)978074864141
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2013


  • Iraq, fiction, cultural history, postcolonial literature


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