The Body in Arabic Love Poetry: The 'Udhri Tradition
A radical re-interpretation of the nature of medieval Arabic love poetry in the classical age This book examines in detail the concept of the body in Arabic love poetry in the 'Udhri tradition. Avoiding familiar clichés about the purity of love in 'Udhri poetry - broadly speaking, an Arabic counterpart to the western medieval concept of unconsummated courtly love - it instead questions the traditional much-vaunted emphasis on chastity and the assumption that this poetry omits any concept of the body. Challenging this view, Jokha Alharthi re-appraises the relationship between love, poetry and Arab society in the 8th to 11th centuries. She focuses on the key differences between what the poetry itself says and the views of later sources about 'Udhri poets and their works. She also documents how the representation of the beloved in the 'Udhri ghazal was influenced by pre-Islamic poetry, showing how this tradition developed, with a series of overlapping historical layers. And she breaks new ground by examining how this poetry treats not only the body of the beloved but also that of her lover, the poet himself. Key Features Challenges the stereotypical idea about the absence of the body in 'Udhri love poetry Investigates the 'Udhri tradition through close readings of the classical 10th-century Arabic sources including anthologies such as the Kitab al-Aghani Read More chevron_right
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