Distant view of a minaret by Alifa Rifaat

DA6CEF32-2AC1-4B1E-BB6F-5B73A71E951DBook set in Cairo, Egypt. Reviewed on 2020/05: https://www.instagram.com/p/CAQBj1kgJXY/

#alifarifaat reminded me of the reasons why I’m obsessed with reading books not only from all over the world, but also books that portray voices or stories which are diverse or underrepresented in those countries. When you try to read books that are immersed in other cultures, I think there is inevitably a level of representation that you expect from the story. #shortstory after short story, #rifaat really forces the reader to challenge our expectations and stereotypes of that representation. An #egyptianwoman , a #muslimwoman , a religiously observant woman engaging with the world, struggling with her world, living within every aspect of her world. These #stories are short, direct and also shrouded in some level of clarity and mystery. The stories sometimes have a twisted ending or sometimes a familiar ending. Either way, you can’t deny their honesty, their power and their human pain in everyday life. Unless you are also familiar with the world that Rifaat describes, there will inevitably be things that you won’t understand. When that happens and especially when reading books from other cultures, the reader needs to engage with stories in a different way instead of reading everything like a literary formula, expecting to “learn” something at the end. In Rifaat’s world, you can ask yourself: why do the words feel intoxicating and intimate at the same time? Why are all my senses activated in every story? Are the endings really ending anything or am I reading a full story in each vignette? #highlyrecommended#egyptianliterature #cairo #القاهرة#أليفة_ رفعت‎ #wavelandpress#distantviewofaminaret#egyptianwomen #muslimwomen#atthetimeofthejasmine #mansoura#badriyyaandherhusband#myworldoftheunkown

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