Labyrinths, Intellectuals and the Revolution

The Arabic-Language Moroccan Novel, 1957-72


Labyrinths, Intellectuals and the Revolution traces the development of the postcolonial Arabic-language Moroccan novel from its roots in travel narratives and autobiography into its more mature period of stylistic and thematic diversity in the early 1970s. This study first undertakes an exploration of the political, social and artistic conditions under which the genre developed, then moves to close readings of each of the formative texts, grouped by theme. The analysis of these texts centers around their spatial practices: there is a tension between the labyrinthine space of the street, which deflects legibility, and the sacred interior within the blank walls, wherein a certain equality of gaze and power can be perceived.
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Biographical Note

Ian Campbell, Ph.D. (2003), Emory University, is Assistant Professor of Arabic at Georgia State University. He has published articles and book chapters on the Arabic-language Moroccan novel and administers a YouTube channel for intermediate Arabic students, Arabic Grammar Unpacked.

Review Quotes

Labyrinths, Intellectuals and the Revolution is an original contribution to the field of Moroccan literary studies. It is particularly useful for students and scholars of modern Arabic literature, postcolonial literature, and specifically Moroccan history and literature. I recommend the book to these audiences as it will provide a window into the core tensions of postcolonial Morocco that persist to this day, understood through the lens of space. Given the relative paucity of scholarship focused on the Arabic-language Moroccan novel, Labyrinths, Intellectuals and the Revolution offers a highly and original and elucidating approach to a set of often-neglected texts.

Christina E. Civantos, University of Miami, in: Int. J. Middle East Stud. 46, pp. 822 - 824


All interested in modern Arabic literature, postcolonial literature, Moroccan history and politics, and Francophone Moroccan literature.