Since the novel is canonized as high culture, its relationship with Arabic popular culture is still understudied. Nevertheless, many novels are adapted into films, TV series and comics, while best-selling books blur the boundaries between highbrow and lowbrow culture. An element of Egyptian culture that cuts across this divide is comedy, since adab sākhir (satiric literature) is a best-selling genre and some novels resort to humour as a key stylistic feature. This paper aims at further investigating the interplay of literature and popular culture through humour. In particular, it examines how popular culture is employed to elicit literary humour and create a counter-narrative about history and society in two novels by Khayrī Shalabī (1938-2011), Riḥlāt al-ṭuršagī al-ḥalwagī (1991) and Ṣāliḥ Hēṣa (2000). Šalabī engages with the culture of laughter in his literary representation of marginal characters and places, linguistic registers, the community of intellectuals he personally knew, and the transmission of turāth (cultural heritage). Firstly, he revives the stock character of the wise-fool to involve the audience in his satirical criticism of society shattering some stereotypes about Egyptianness. Secondly, he represents humour as a collective experience and act of subversive creation. Thus, applying Bakhtin’s conception, the hash den and the street in the two novels become carnivalesque sites of resistance.
The Culture of Laughter in Khayrī Shalabī 's Novels / C. Dozio (BAMBERGER ORIENTSTUDIEN). - In: Approaches to Arabic Popular Culture / [a cura di] P. Konerding, F. Wiedemann, L. Behzadi. - Prima edizione. - Bamberg : University of Bamberg Press, 2021. - ISBN 978-3-86309-766-0. - pp. 35-58 (( convegno Arabic Popular Culture : Research Colloquium tenutosi a Bamberg nel 2017.
|Titolo:||The Culture of Laughter in Khayrī Shalabī 's Novels|
DOZIO, CRISTINA (Corresponding)
|Parole Chiave:||humour; contemporary Egyptian literature; popular culture; Shalabī; identity; carnivalesque|
|Settore Scientifico Disciplinare:||Settore L-OR/12 - Lingua e Letteratura Araba|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2021|
|Tipologia:||Book Part (author)|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||03 - Contributo in volume|