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In the Shadow of World LiteratureSites of Reading in Colonial Egypt$
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Michael Allan

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780691167824

Published to University Press Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691167824.001.0001

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date: 02 June 2020

Literature

Literature

How Adab Became Literary

Chapter:
(p.74) 4 Literature
Source:
In the Shadow of World Literature
Author(s):

Michael Allan

Publisher:
Princeton University Press
DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691167824.003.0005

This chapter examines how discussions of world literature relate to the field of Arabic literature by tracing how the Arabic term adab became literary. It considers how definitions of the literary turn on assertions of how to read, respond, and relate to texts by analyzing literary history, on the one hand, as it intersects with literary theory, on the other, to focus on finite moments in the work of Jurji Zaydan, H. A. R. Gibb, and Edward Said. The chapter shows that this convergence of literature and adab ultimately enables an alternate genealogy of world literature—one based less on the accumulation of texts than on an emergent global discipline. It argues that asking about how adab becomes literary is intertwined with the question of what literature is and with the overlapping of philology and pedagogy it implies.

Keywords:   world literature, Arabic literature, adab, literary history, literary theory, Jurji Zaydan, H. A. R. Gibb, Edward Said, philology, pedagogy

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