Chapter

Introduction

Radwa Ashour, Ferial J. Ghazoul and Hasna Reda-Mekdashi

in Arab Women Writers

Published by American University in Cairo Press

Published in print November 2008 | ISBN: 9789774161469
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9781936190003 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5743/cairo/9789774161469.003.0001
Introduction

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Arab women writers draw on a rich, ancient heritage, which stretches back to civilizations that flourished in the region before the Islamic conquest. Al-Khansa' emerges positively in the culture; others were ostracized and held up as the epitome of wickedness and depravity. In later periods—the 'Abbasid, Umayyad, and Andalusian eras—biographical dictionaries and literary encyclopedias are filled with the names of hundreds of women, including female poets. Arab women's writing has dealt with a diversity of themes addressed in various styles, although historical concerns and an awareness of a double burden remains a basic theme in their writing. Writing women from various Arab countries are growing daily more aware of the exigencies of thoughtful, artistic writing, going beyond pure ideological criteria and fragile, direct moralizing or didacticism.

Keywords: Arab women; female poets; Al-Khansa; Abbasid era; Umayyad era; Andalusian era

Chapter.  5321 words. 

Subjects: Society and Culture

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