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This article looks at cross-revolutionary writing among Arab writers who, after the 1967 War, looked to Vietnam as an anti-imperialist revolutionary co-cause of the Palestinians and a possible alternative future of national liberation, and to Vietnamese literature as a parallel “literature of resistance.” Taking the Vietnam-Palestine comparison as a focal point, this article illuminates a transnational Arab network of avant-garde literary production that corresponded with, translated, and published each other’s work in Morocco, Syria, Lebanon, and the United States. As such, rather than an example of direct South-South comparison, cross-revolutionary Arab writing via Vietnam triangulated its critiques through the United States and European leftist movements, producing a model of literary production and revolutionary vision that was distinct from and critical of those movements’ solidarity politics. Cross-revolutionary reading produced a distinct conception of literary commitment and a new aesthetic sensibility in Arabic literature, and provides a model of comparison that does not elide but circumscribes European and American literature within its visionary gaze.
Comparative Literature – Duke University Press
Published: Sep 1, 2021
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