Philip Kennedy's Abu Nuwas (Makers of the Muslim World) PDF

By Philip Kennedy

ISBN-10: 1435683757

ISBN-13: 9781435683754

ISBN-10: 1851683607

ISBN-13: 9781851683604

ISBN-10: 1851685103

ISBN-13: 9781851685103

A readable survey of this celebrated ninth century Arab poet.

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When love was blighted by time and separation, the preIslamic poet had tended to “cut the ropes of affection” (to cut his losses in an heroic posture); the ‘udhri poet, by contrast, projected his love into the future opened up by the new religion: toward death and, of course, far beyond it. The philandering ‘Umar ibn Abi Rabi‘a modeled himself partly on Imru’ al-Qays (fl. early sixth century). ‘Umar’s animated poem in which he describes a nocturnal visit to his beloved’s tribe (stealing into her tent, spending the night and oversleeping, and having to escape the encampment at dawn draped in a woman’s robes, trailing them behind him to erase his tracks), expands upon a short passage in Imru’ al-Qays’s Mu‘allaqa (“Suspended Ode”), one of the archetypes of the ancient corpus.

AND THE LASH” 43 He was sitting on a prayer rug Surrounded by slaves; He threw a glance at me, Hunting with his eyes. That was in Hafs’s schoolroom – How lucky is Hafs! ” Silk robes were stripped from him And a striped garment, Then they “terrorized” him with molly-coddling Castigation, without even a stick; Then my sweetheart cried out: “Sir! ” (D. iv, 194) Castigation is a double-edged theme and part of the erotic tension of the piece in which, with perfectly pitched understatement, chastisement-and-leniency or servitude-anddomination, swap roles with each other.

Satirizing his tediously pedantic ponderings on the stillness and motion of objects. Abu Nuwas was not irreligious in the sense that he belonged to a heretical group. His license with religious pre- and proscription was affected irreverence,as was in essence his reliance on God’s clemency as a pliant excuse. It is significant in this respect that the two noncanonical prophetic traditions told on his authority deal with the possibility of entering Paradise as a sinner. His transgressions were not only those associated with wine-drinking and affection for young men.

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Abu Nuwas (Makers of the Muslim World) by Philip Kennedy


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