In this study we try to monitor the aspects of magical realism in the novel (The Cotton Flower) by the Syrian novelist Khalil Al-Nuaimi. The novel recently published by the Arab Institute of Studies and Publishing in Beirut, which delved into the depths of the Syrian individual in the Badia of Hasaka Governorate to talk about a Bedouin culture full of details.
The novel focused most of its attention on the place; As the effective narrative component, as its clear effects on the characters are noted, and the myth played a clear role as an important cultural resource in the manifestation of the magical-realistic appearance in the narrative sequence; The novelist succeeded in exploiting this tributary and thus presenting a text with a legendary theme.
The child of the story, who heard more than he saw, and who felt the world like a little hedgehog on his skin before he learned to speak, grew up listening to the sensations of the universe that echoed in his limbs vary. and it is he who will draw us to his favorite story, and let us see the “first earth” on which he arose, including spread over the universe.
“A confusing period of silence passed. The boy saw the colors of the space around him changing, so he grabbed his father’s big fingers with his small hands, and felt his father’s palm touch his hand, so he calmed down as he moved after him like a bird.”
The desert and the search for lost love
In the novel (The Cotton Flower) by the author Khalil Al-Nuaimi, the legend played a key role in the formation of a narrative sequence. Navigating the kingdom of the desert, telling his story in the mysterious kingdom of the “under”, using his unique novel ability and popular legend with captivating features, he confidently dives into fantasy unknowns, surrounded by dangers and fears in all its aspects.
This is the author Khalil Al-Nuaimi; It tells of a magical power of the great powers of the universe, with a voice imitating the “adventurous conscience” and the love of exploration. The fallacy of myths and folktales is one of the prominent features in the novel “modernity” and post-modernity, and we find that the novelist Khalil Al-Nuaimi is employed in a distinctive way, helping to create the text and giving it its written efficacy. He sees in it the ability to enrich the text, either with its themes or with its language that approaches the language of poetry.
The author worked to invest this cultural tributary in the narrative text; Thus he crossed the threshold of direct meaning by activating what is implicit in the incident by adding some frills and changing it in a way that contributes to the presentation of a text with a mythical theme.
The treatment of legend in the novel (Cotton Flower) is done on the basis that it is a normative value and not as a mere story that explains and explains, so the presence of the legend pushes the text towards immersion in the sea of exoticism and its utilization, enhancing the characteristics of magical realism.
Contradiction and duality
Magical realism is a type of narrative that does not distinguish between real and imaginary or unreal events, but places them in one narrative and aesthetic context that produces a new semantic level. This contradiction makes the novelist Khalil Al-Nuaimi a magical and paradoxical thing, in which reality and that which is beyond reality contradict reality, where reality lies in magical realism, and it grows at the disposal of imagination.
Among the prominent elements in magical realism in (Katoenblom), the natural coexistence between opposing elements, such as the meeting of realism with fiction, and nature with metaphysics. But these opposing elements are not entirely related to the world of imagination, nor are they related to the real world; Rather, it has an independent existence of both of them, reality and imagination, merging with each other. In other words, we do not find that one of these opposing elements dominates and controls the other, but on the contrary, we find that the opposing elements correspond to each other and are equal in the events of the novel.
Contrasting and duality, which is one of the elements of magical realism, we find several models in the novel (Katoenblom) The duality is manifested in this novel in the contrast of the two elements “good” and “evil”, so that the reader comes this from the beginning of the novel against, and also in this novel we find contradiction and duality in the character of the hero; It is not a single person, it is the many in one person, the sum of the persons in one, the many and the one united by the neighborhood.
illusion and imagination
Illusion and imagination are strongly manifested in this novel and in many manifestations; Including the description of places and the weaving of people’s imaginations about them, and his belief in the presence and behavior of demons, the relationship with women, especially sex.
Finally, we can say about the Syrian novelist Khalil Al-Nuaimi, who has a wide presence in the Arab world. His use of magical realism elements in his novel was a successful and functional use; So that the reader is not surprised when he encounters unreal events, but rather accepts and believes them. Thus, magical realism in the novel strives to blend and portray reality, fantasy, and myth formed by this blending; A rich world is known and unknown at the same time!
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