martes, 4 de noviembre de 2008

a conference

Arabic sci-fi seeks to grow
Anwar Elshamy

In its second and closing session, the Novel and Future seminar focused on the future of the Arabic novel, especially that of science fiction, at the Ritz-Carlton as part of the 5th Doha Cultural Festival 2006.
Spain-based Iraqi writer and academian Dr.Muhsin al-Ramli indicated that nobody so far has been able to put a clear-cut definition to the concept of “science fiction.”
Issac Asimouf, who is one of the leading writers of this genre, put it as “science fiction is the literary genre that seeks a human response from the ongoing changes in science and technology.”
Al-Ramli also spoke about the historical origin of science fiction, with reference to “Thousand and one Nights,” Hai Ibn Yaqzan, and Al-Farabi’s “Virtuous City.”
He also gave examples of modern Arab writers like Mostafa Mahmoud in his “Web” and “Subzero man,” Saad Makkawi in his “Living Dead,” and Mohammed al-Hadidi in his “Other Person in the Mirror.”
Al-Ramli has also classified the most recurring themes of science fiction, including Space Opera, Utopia, Dystopia, Hard Science Fiction, Allohistory and Cyber Punk.
He reiterated that Arab science fiction experiences short age in serious criticism because “Only a few Arab critics take these seriously.”
*Published in the newspaper (Gulf Times), Special Supplement, March 29, 2006 Qatar

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