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‘Permitted and Forbidden’ – Conventions of Relations between the Sexes and Their Contravention as Reflected in the Novels of Ghāib uma Farmān

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This paper examines the difference in the way romantic connections between men and women are presented in the novels of the √©migr√© Iraqi author Ghāib uma Farmān (1927–90) in comparison to the preceding generation of writers, as an expression of how ideology affected the artistic course taken by Communist authors, in view of the fact that relations between the sexes were a taboo subject in Arab literature. The paper shows the ways in which Farmān copes with the taboo in the conservative patriarchal society in which he grew up and the rhetorical and thematic devices he uses to shatter accepted conventions. The works serve as a prism to examine the triple bond between political and social ideology, language and coping with issues of the relations between the sexes, by exploring selected issues relating to sexuality as expressed in these works: sexual relations outside marriage, forced marriage or prevention of marriage, and the treatment of the daughter-in-law by the husband's family.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Arabic, Bar-Ilan University, Ramat-Gan, Israel

Publication date: May 1, 2013

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