Faten Hussein (KCL) - 2015-16 Students

Illness as Allegory: Political and Social Critique in Arabic Illness Narrative

My research investigates representations of illness in Arabic memoirs and fiction. Researching the literary possibilities of illness in Arabic illness narratives is a relatively new area of study. I will therefore attempt to draw a trajectory of how personal and social attitudes towards illness, and their literary representations have developed in Arab countries. Leading to the present, I will consider how the recent political upheavals in the Arab world may be capable of reshaping the social and subjective aspects of illness. My aim is to show how these narratives are often forms of political, social and cultural critique, and investigate how we should construe the link between the subjective and socio-political experience of illness in Arab countries. Being at the intersection of Medical Humanities and Comparative Literature, my research also illustrates the importance of inter-disciplinary approaches to texts in challenging taboos, and stigmas by explaining their intersectional nature.

Back to the top