Seven francophone Mediterranean women writers speak out inside and outside

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


I propose to analyze the relationship that seven Mediterranean women writers have with writing, language, exile, and the dialogues they have created through their work. I will examine their writing as it inscribes itself within the context of their lives and how it reflects the problems of their society: the search for identity, the languages used, the condition of women, sexuality, violence, wars and resistance, peaceful alternatives, philosophical questions of life and death, political issues of engagement, etc. The seven writers I have chosen are Andrée Chedid, Vénus Khoury-Ghata, Ezza Agha-Malak, Etel Adnan, Nadia Tuéni, Evelyne Accad, and Assia Djebar. All of them express themselves in French, which is in part due to the protectorate that France exercised over Lebanon between the two world wars, and the colonization of the North African countries. The use of a foreign language produced a greater trauma in North Africa compared with the Middle East because of the nature of French influence and power it exercised: the greater the power and domination, the greater the trauma. Trilingualism (Arabic, French, and English) used in Lebanon allowed for a plurality and openness not found in other Arab societies; this has been both a blessing and a curse for Lebanon, as it brought on the conflict of civil war when dissident voices could not harmonize. Mediterranean literature of French expression counts an important number of novelists and poets with a wide Franco-Arab audience in the Mediterranean region as well as in many other countries around the globe. Questions of belonging and knowledge are very much at the core of their writing. In this chapter, we will see how Andrée Chedid talks of exile and liberty,
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationWomen and Knowledge in the Mediterranean
EditorsFatima Sadiqi
Number of pages16
ISBN (Print)9780203078266
StatePublished - Dec 1 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)


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