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Religion in the Egyptian Novel$
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Christina Phillips

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781474417068

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: May 2021

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474417068.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM EDINBURGH SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.edinburgh.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Edinburgh University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ESO for personal use.date: 25 September 2021

The Coptic Theme

The Coptic Theme

(p.153) 6 The Coptic Theme
Religion in the Egyptian Novel

Christina Phillips

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter explores literary engagements with Coptic Christianity in works by Baha’ Tahir, Idwar al-Kharrat, Salwa Bakr and Yusuf Zaydan. It explores Baha’ Tahir’s Khalati Safiyya wa’l-Dayr (1991) as a complex allegory of religious tolerance and reads Idwar al-Kharrat’s Turabuha Zaʿfaran (1986) as an example of Deleuze and Guattari’s concept of minor discourse whilst paying attention to Christian scriptural reference and themes of religious tolerance and Coptic identity. It then examines how Salwa Bakr’s Al-Bashmuri (1998) and Yusuf Zaydan’s ‘Azazil (2008) rewrite history from a Coptic perspective in order to redress the historical marginalisation of Egypt’s Christians and to destabilise certain myths of history and nation. Religious tolerance, religious violence and religious criticism as represented in these works are also examined.

Keywords:   Baha’ Tahir, Idwar al-Kharrat, Salwa Bakr, Yusuf Zaydan, Deleuze and Guattari, Coptic theme, Coptic Christianity

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