Forms and Acts of Resistance in Amin Maalouf’s Leo the African
This article, which is entitled ‘Forms and Acts of Resistance in Amin Maalouf’s Leo the African’, is about the problematic power and resistance in a novel which is set in Islamic Spain. The idea behind this paper is that power relations, albeit lopsided, are not absolute in this novel but fluid. Not to mention that it is not unilateral as commonly thought of but--multilateral. Indeed, the setting of this Moorish novel is informed by religious and cultural tensions and the Spanish Inquisition in the Crescent and Christendom relation of power. It talks about an era prior to the epistemic and physical aggression on Moorish culture in 1492 and the failure of the Moor-Spaniard capitulación and convivencia. But since power and resistance figure immensely in this text, the analysis problematizes that relationship following the approach of the Foucauldian post-modern, positive conception of power. The object of analysis is treated as fiction, and the underlying methods are content analysis. The thesis concludes that power is fractured from within by other discourses. Besides, the problem of power and resistance is part of what is called centripetal and centrifugal dynamics: Power oscillates between two contending blocs and is, therefore, never static; these are a potion, a cocktail mix.
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