Changing seasons: examining three decades of women's writing in Greater Syria and Egypt
2013-06-10T07:36:32Z (GMT) by
Throughout the last three decades, the Arab region has attracted the unwanted attention of the rest of the world because of its spiralling political upheaval. This unrest has caused migration, economic and cultural changes, and eventually a spring of revolutions and protests in demand of reform. Arab countries are now in the spotlight of global current affairs, and all the imperfections regarding their cultural, social, and gender inequalities have surfaced to the foreground. Arab women novelists have been addressing feminist issues for centuries, chipping away at the stereotypical image of the meek and voiceless Arab woman that comes hand in hand with Orientalism. Through their fiction, writers such as Nawal El Saadawi, Hanan Al- Shaykh and Fadia Faqir have promulgated a bold brand of Arab feminist thought. This interdisciplinary thesis explores the Greater Syrian and Egyptian woman's novel written between 1975 and 2007. Through the in-depth analysis of Arab women's novels available in English, I attempt to uncover the many reasons behind today's gender inequality in Greater Syria and Egypt. By examining contemporary Arabic narrative styles and cultivating traditional Arab story-telling methods, the creative element of this thesis uses fiction to expose social and political injustice. The novel within this thesis challenges different forms of patriarchy that are dominant in the region, and endeavours to document a historical, on-going revolution.