Historical Imagination in the Modern Arabic Novel The Druze of Belgrade

in La rivista di Arablit, a. XII, n. 23, giugno 2022, pp. 69-84.

True historical events and figures are generally the basis of any historical novel, but a novel requires a literary form created by the imagination. Usually, the author introduces a combination of real and imagined facts. In his historical novel Durūz Bilġrād. Ḥikāyat Ḥannā Ya‘qūb (The Druze of Belgrade), Rabī‘ Ǧābir relied on several historical facts, enhancing them by the inclusion of events that could have occurred in that era, as well as introducing figures that could have existed. Some real characters are given pseudonyms and invented details of their behavior. This article examines the effects and effectiveness of the imaginary elements in this novel and assesses the degree to which the author succeeded in his objectives by the inclusion of those created characters and events. Furthermore, it analyses the nature of the relationship between the historical period chosen by Rabī‘ Ǧābir and the actual political and social reality in Lebanon to which the figures and events of this novel belong.

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This is an Article from La Rivista di Arablit - Anno XII, numero 23, giugno 2022

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