Academic journal article Arab Studies Quarterly

Editor's Note

Academic journal article Arab Studies Quarterly

Editor's Note

Article excerpt

This issue includes three articles: Karam AbuSehly's "The Dialectic of Nonsimultaneity in Bahaa Taher's Sunset Oasis" constructs a national imaginary in crisis that reveals the impacts of British colonialism in Egypt. The author employs Ernst Bloch's notion of the "simultaneity of the non-simultaneous" to hermeneutically read Taher's novel and his "preoccupation" with love, exile, and death. Bloch's concept, the author contends, is the logic of the form and content of a nation in crisis. The multiple temporalities (not everyone lives in the same "Now"), i.e., individuals exist in different historical situations and consciousness, allow Taher to advance "a multivoiced dialectic, that brings all contradictions to consciousness without mastering and controlling them under a grand narrative."

Gregory J. Shibley's "Revisiting Hitti's Thoughts on Palestine and Arab Identity" focuses on Philip Hitti's understanding of Palestine and Arab identity. The author argues that Hitti (a pioneer of Arab American Studies) had been consistent in opposing a Jewish homeland in Palestine and his notion that Arab identity is different from Syrian identity. To Hitti, "Arabs" were Muslim, while "Syrians" were Christian. Shibley discusses Hitti's main works, The Syrians in America (1924) and History of the Arabs (1937), and attempts to rescue Hitti's reputation from being lumped, as other Syrian immigrants had done, together with less influential Syrian writers who advanced a victimhood narrative of emigration to the USA: Christians persecuted by Ottomans. …

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