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We Are Imazighen: The Development of Algerian Berber Identity in Twentieth-Century Literature and Culture

We Are Imazighen: The Development of Algerian Berber Identity in Twentieth-Century Literature and Culture (Hardback)

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Synopsis

To the world they are known as Berbers, but they prefer to call themselves Imazighen, or "free people." The claim to this unique cultural identity has been felt most acutely in Algeria in the Kabylia region, where an Amazigh consciousness gradually emerged after WWII. This is a valuable model for other Amazigh movements in North Africa, where the existence of an Amazigh language and culture is denied or dismissed in countries such as Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, and Libya.By tracing the cultural production of the Kabyle people-their songs, oral traditions, and literature-from the early 1930s to the end of the twentieth century, Fazia Aitel shows how they have defined their own culture over time, both within Algeria and in its diaspora. She analyzes the role of Amazigh identity in the works of novelists such as Mouloud Feraoun, Tahar Djaout, and Assia Djebar, and she investigates the intersection of Amazigh consciousness and the Beur movement in France. She also addresses the political and social role of the Kabyles in Algeria and in France, where after independence it was easier for the Berber community to express and organize itself.Ultimately, Aitel argues that the Amazigh literary tradition is founded on dual priorities: the desire to foster a genuine dialogue while retaining a unique culture.

Essays & WritingLiterary CriticismLiterary studies: generalLiterary studies: from c 1900 -Philosophy, Psychology & Social SciencesAnthropologySocial & cultural anthropologyPhilosophy, Psychology & Social SciencesSocial groupsEthnic studiesIndigenous peoples Publisher: University Press of Florida Publication Date: 30/10/2014 ISBN-13: 9780813049397  Details: Type: Hardback Format: Books
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Fazia Aitel, associate professor of modern languages at Claremont McKenna College, USA, is a coeditor of The Veil in All Its States.

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