Etel Adnan

Critical Essays on the Arab-American Writer and Artist


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About the Book

This collection of essays concentrates on Arab-American writer and artist Etel Adnan. Up until now, there has been no single volume dedicated to her work despite Adnan’s increasing recognition and acclaim across the United States, Europe, and the Middle East.
The essays fall into two sections. In the first, the essays respond to the range of vision and experience in Adnan’s writing and art through analysis and appreciation. The second section focuses on responses to and interpretations of Sitt Marie Rose, Adnan’s well known novel about the Lebanese war.
As a whole, the writings in this work seek to provide a comprehensive look at Adnan’s literary and artistic accomplishments through analysis and close readings that place her texts within wider literary contexts.

About the Author(s)

Lisa Suhair Majaj has written articles on Arab and Arab-American literature that have appeared in a number of collections and journals. She lives in Nicosia, Cyprus.
Amal Amireh is currently an assistant professor of English and World Literature at George Mason University.

Bibliographic Details

Edited by Lisa Suhair Majaj and Amal Amireh
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 221
Bibliographic Info: photos, notes, references, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2002
pISBN: 978-0-7864-1072-9
eISBN: 978-0-7864-8275-7
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments     vii

Preface: Situating Etel Adnan in a Literary Context     1

Introduction: Biographical and Career Highlights     15


1 Etel Adnan: A Cosmic Poet     27

2 The Arab Apocalypse as a Critique of Colonialism and Imperialism     37

3 Irremediable Ecstasy: Modes of the Lyric     50

4 From Beirut to Beirut: Exile, Wandering and Homecoming     67

5 On Perception: Etel Adnan’s Visual Art     89

6 Variations on an Andalusian Theme: Undated Letters to Etel     103


7 Mary Rose     115

8 The International Reception     117

9 Transgressive Subjects: Gender, War, and Colonialism     122

10 Ever Since Gilgamesh: Etel Adnan’s Discourse of National Unity     137

11 Among Good Christian Peoples: Teaching Sitt Marie Rose     153

12 Voice, Narrative, and Political Critique     176

About the Contributors     197

Index     201