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One of Them

Reem Ghanayem On:

One of Them by One of Them

Current Tunisian literature continues to feature distinct voices in the realms of poetry, the short story, and the novel alike. This distinctiveness is founded in particular on a creative capacity to broaden both narrative space and reliance on the writing experiments taking place among Arab and non-Arab authors at once. Tunisian writers increasingly exhibit a clear narrative identity with its own unique flavor and presence coupled with an openness to experimentation and ground-breaking exploration. In this text, promising 17-year-old author Aziz Yahyawi constructs a story world with a kind of narrative authority. We glide among the characters’ orbits, yet without establishing intimate connections either with them or with the story’s dark language, which creates a parallel world permeated by a sense of frigid remoteness and fear. This style in and of itself generates and deepens diverse meanings through a tightly constructed, surrealist tale that steers clear of the allure of both rhetorical flourish and limp descriptive prose.

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