We Have not Buried the Simple Past: the Public Sphere and Post-Colonial Literature in Morocco
This paper argues that Moroccan post-colonial literature engages the public sphere in a dialectical relationship wherein models of public debate and normative aesthetics are rehearsed. Interventions in the literary sphere create a public space for subaltern concerns, test and expand the boundaries of public liberties, create a forum for public debate and usually start the conversation on matters of general interest. Through an analysis of two exegetic texts of Moroccan post-colonial literature, Driss Chraibi's The Simple Past (1990) (originally published in French in 1954) and Abdalkrim Ghallab's (We Buried the Past) (1966) (first serialized between 1963 and 1965 then published as a novel in 1966), I contend that these two novels rehearse two dominant public sphere models which oscillate between an inchoate interpretation of democratic space and a homogenized form of consensus. The ultimate objective is to track strategies through which Moroccan literature in particular, and Maghrebi literature in general, have interacted with local politics of culture and cultural politics under colonial rule and in the post-colonial era.
Said Graiouid. "We Have not Buried the Simple Past: the Public Sphere and Post-Colonial Literature in Morocco" The Journal of African Cultural Studies 20.2 (2008).