Download e-book for iPad: Al-Mutanabbi: Voice of the ‘Abbasid Poetic Ideal by Margaret Larkin

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By Margaret Larkin

ISBN-10: 1851684069

ISBN-13: 9781851684069

This exhaustive and but enchanting research considers the existence and paintings of al-Mutanabbi (915-965), frequently considered as the best of the classical Arab poets. A progressive at center and sometimes imprisoned or compelled into exile all through his tumultuous lifestyles, al-Mutanabbi wrote either debatable satires and while hired by way of one in all his many consumers, laudatory panegyrics. making use of an ornate sort and use of the ode, al-Mutanabbi used to be one of many first to effectively stream clear of the ordinarily inflexible kind of Arabic verse, the 'qasida'.

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Extra info for Al-Mutanabbi: Voice of the ‘Abbasid Poetic Ideal

Sample text

The ability to seize on details, whether of logic or circumstance, as the point of departure for his poems is one of the skills that helped al-Mutanabbi navigate his way around the conventional limitations of his day. This poem, like the foregoing ones, contains a number of verses imitative of lines composed by well-known predecessors. Summoning up the poetry of earlier poets was inevitable, and even desirable, in a culture in which poetry was primarily a communal experience. The skilled poet’s difficult task was to find a delicate balance between celebration of the tradition and innovation.

He is doubly abandoned. More importantly, it emphasizes the existential aloneness of the poet, and the grief and sadness he experiences are emphatically represented as the experience of an individual rather than a group or implied community. This is reinforced by the succeeding line, in which al-Mutanabbi presents the forsaken lover as being not only abandoned but also harassed by his critics. Not only do his erstwhile friends not lament with him;they also find fault with his need to weep: I am aught but a lover and for every lover the most derelict of his two pure friends is the one who blames him.

Al-Mutanabbi took great pride in his own tribal heritage, but for him it was just one ingredient, albeit an important one, in the sense of self and of individual worth to which he was primarily attached. In this elegy, al-Mutanabbi is articulating a new ethic for a new age, using the terms set by the old edifice. THE IKHSHIDID CONNECTION By the end of 941, al-Mutanabbi, frustrated with the insecurity and the modesty of his circumstances, put aside his aversion to panegyrizing non-Arab rulers, and set his sights on the court of Muhammad al-Ikhshid, who had regained control over much of Syria.

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Al-Mutanabbi: Voice of the ‘Abbasid Poetic Ideal by Margaret Larkin

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