Dr. Eman El-Meligi is an Associate Professor in the Department of English at Damanhur University in Egypt. She received her Ph.D. on the Theory of Edward Said from the Department of English at Alexandria University. Dr. El-Meligi was the Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence at the Department of English at Gettysburg College in 2011-2012.
2015 1-4955-0290-2 This book analyzes how Edward Said’s critical and cultural theory, together with his practical criticism, dismantles the Myth of the Authenticity of canonical, Orientalist and imperialist discourse. Said’s interdisciplinary informs the multiple approaches of this present study. Therefore, the first chapter uses the theoretical and critical, while the second tends to use the textual, biographical and hermeneutical. The third chapter focuses on the historical, as related to phenomenological hermeneutics. Indeed the three chapters, like Said’s work, attempt to employ postcolonial notions and poststructuralist techniques, necessary for “deconstructing” the myth of authenticity of Western discourse and for offering a counter-narrative. The fourth and fifth chapters of this book lend themselves to cultural studies, exactly as Said did in the books discussed in these chapters.
To dismantle the Myth of Authenticity, Edward Said consecutively tackles five interrelated epistemological fields related to imperialism: literary theory and criticism, cultural studies, the media, and ideology and politics. The first two interrelated aspects, researched in the first and second chapters of this book, underline works like The Letters and Shorter Fiction of Joseph Conrad (1964) Beginnings (1975), The World, the Text and the Critic (1983), Culture and Imperialism (1993) and Representations of the Intellectual (1994). Cultural Studies is crystallized in his seminal work Orientalism: Western Conceptions of the Orient (1978), a work accredited by various critics to have inaugurated the whole field of postcolonial studies. His achievement is highlighted in the third chapter of this book. Said extends his search afterwards from critical theory and literary texts and travelogues to the media, as in his Covering Islam (1981), discussed in Chapter Four of this study. This naturally leads Said to focusing on the ideological and political aspects in, for instance, The Question of Palestine (1979), The Politics of Dispossession (1994), The End of the Peace Process (2000) and Culture and Resistance (2003). This aspect is surveyed in Chapter Five, which also links ideology and politics to hybridity and harmony as the only alternative, as is clear in his Parallels and Paradoxes (2002) and Freud and the Non-European (2003).
2014 0-7734-4297-9 A fascinating analysis of postmodernist metafictional writers offering a unique juxtapositioning of authors from distinct cultural worlds with their varied fictional narrative techniques. A must read for comparative literature, postmodernist fiction and cultural studies interests.
2015 1-4955-0291-0 This book, on Postmodernist Arab American literature, offers comparative readings informed by theories and approaches by Foucault, Gramsci, Baudrillard, Said, Gilbert and Gubar, Lyotard, Genette, Deleuze and Guttari, Hutcheon, as well as Saldivar, Villa and Anzaldua.
“Living Theory: A Comparative Reading of Feminist-Postcolonial Resonances in Leila Ahmed’s A Border Passage (1999) and Postmodernist Reflections in Ihab Hassan’s Out of Egypt” (1986), studies the two autobiographies as an embodiment and reflection of critical and literary theory. “The Text and the World: Foucauldian and Gramscian Resonances in Historiographic Metafictional Prison Narratives,” offers a comparative reading of Sinan Antoon’sI’jaam: An Iraqi Rhapsody and the Egyptian Nawal El Saadawi’s Memoirs from the Woman’s Prison. “The Arabian Nights as a Postmodern Arab American Counternarrative,” offers a comparative reading of “Rhizome,” “Thick Description” and Minority Discourse in Jack Marshall’s The Arabian Nights (1986) and Moha Kahf’s E-Mails from Sheherazad (2003). “Technique as Culture in Postmodern Ethnic American novel,” offers a feminist cultural reading of “Barrio-Logos” of the “Nueva Mestiza” in Sandra Cisneros’ Caramelo and Diana Abu-Jaber’s Crescent, reading Arab American borderland novel genre within the discursive framework of Chicana critical and cultural theory.
The hermeneutical counternarrative offered by the above writers is a very practical and reflexive one that is told in an exaggeratedly rhetorical or oratorical manner, even when politics, history, dictatorship, exile and imperialism are always lurking at the background. With their nomadic body without organs, Arab American writers have voiced and contextualized their minority discourse. This has been mainly done through technique, acting as culture and embodying the rhizome troupe, elucidating the assemblage of nomadic identities in constant formation and flux.
2012 0-7734-3047-4 This book compares the literary styles of two authors from vastly different cultural and national heritages. Tawfiq Al-Hakim is an Egyptian and V.S. Naipaul is from Trinidad. The cultures are different but their literary techniques bear an affinity to one another. The author showcases how cultural differences are depicted in these novels, while also revealing a shared set of literary conventions utilized by these talented authors. Both draw on mythology and Jungian archetypes which are fertile ground for critical analysis that juxtapose them.