Back to search

FRIHUMSAM-Fri hum og sam

Narrating the Nation: Moroccan Personal and National Identity in the Post-Independence Arabophone Novel.

Awarded: NOK 2.0 mill.

The overarching aim of this study is to investigate the creation of a personal, cultural and national identity in post-independence Morocco, and to what extent this was articulated in the arabophone novel. By analyzing how the notion of the new independen t Moroccan nation was narrated one will understand the basis for the power struggles within society, and the essential role played by the novel in the creation of Moroccan nationhood. What distinguished the arabophone authors from their francophone counte rparts was the relation to textual interaction with fellow Arabic writers from the mashriq in contesting Western tradition and a search for indigenous form. By sharing the same language, religion, and literary heritage (turath) as well as the colonial exp erience and struggle for national independence Moroccan writes found inspiration from writers in countries like Egypt, Lebanon and Syria. This has been expressed through a shared pan-Arabist ideology and a fight for the introduction of Arabic language in education, and national bureaucracy, as well as an urge for self-determinism, socialism and reaffirmation of Arabic as the national language and Islam as the national religion and culture. In the process of imagining the Moroccan nation as an Arabic nat ion with Arabic as an integral part of its culture and language, the francophone writes are in this sense seen as writing from the outside, and not seen as a major part of the nation. This is a vital part of the perception of the nation as Arabic, in rela tion to the rationale and the solidity and power of the King as a direct descendent of the prophet, hence Islam and Arabic language are absolutely interlinked and it is not possible to separate these aspects from the Moroccan nationhood. By bringing sever al strands of nationalism and nation formation into scrutiny on the one hand and the literary narrating and imaging of the nation on the other one hopes to reach a better understanding of the painful process and gr

Funding scheme:

FRIHUMSAM-Fri hum og sam