Trauma in the Novels of the Iraqi-Kuwaiti Writer, IsmāꜤīl Fahd IsmāꜤīl
A prolific Iraqi-Kuwaiti writer, Ismaʿil Fahd Ismaʿil (1940-) has published over thirty novels among other literary works. Though a less-studied Arabic novelist, his writings are comparable—in terms of quantity, genre, length, technique, and subject matter—to those of the Egyptians Najib Mahfuz and Tawfiq al-Hakim. This article argues that trauma is reflected not just in Ismaʿil’s fiction, but also in his own conflicted persona, his identity as an Iraqi-Kuwaiti writer. The article reads al-Ḥabl, in particular, as an autobiographical novel that portrays Ismaʿil’s personal experiences of trauma in 1960s Iraq.
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