Century of Locusts

Century of Locusts What first appears as a tiny moving shadow no bigger than a fly on the dazzling horizon slowly reveals itself as the grim shape of violence and death in the destruction left behind the mother s brok

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  • Title: Century of Locusts
  • Author: Malika Mokeddem Laura Rice Karim Hamdy
  • ISBN: 9780803283060
  • Page: 392
  • Format: Paperback
  • What first appears as a tiny moving shadow, no bigger than a fly, on the dazzling horizon slowly reveals itself as the grim shape of violence and death in the destruction left behind the mother s broken body, the hidden child, the crying infant begins the story of wandering and loss, of exile and desolation that sounds all the sad echoes of disappearing Bedouin life SetWhat first appears as a tiny moving shadow, no bigger than a fly, on the dazzling horizon slowly reveals itself as the grim shape of violence and death in the destruction left behind the mother s broken body, the hidden child, the crying infant begins the story of wandering and loss, of exile and desolation that sounds all the sad echoes of disappearing Bedouin life Set in the first half of the twentieth century, Malika Mokeddem s Century of Locusts combines the magic of exquisitely wrought desert landscapes, the intrigue of Bedouin tales of madmen and poets, and the personal pain of exile and isolation to evoke a way of life destroyed by the scourge of settler colonialism The book tells the braided tales of those left to resist a wandering poet and his mute, stricken daughter, Yasmine the lunatic Majnoun and Majnoun s murderous sidekick, Hassan, who twitches and squints with malevolence, lurking along the story s shadowy borders Rippling ever outward with allusions and echoes, the tale eventually encompasses Algeria s legendary past, its colonial injustices, and its uncertain future, even as Mokeddem s poetry and deft touch confer life and hope on the ravaged body of this desert land.

    One thought on “Century of Locusts”

    1. Ein Buch, für das man sich Zeit nehmen muss. Malika Mokeddem schildert in bunten Farben aber auch in harter Klarheit das Leben in der Wüste Algeriens, die voller Kargheit aber auch von unbeschreiblicher Schönheit ist. Mahmoud, ein Dichter, der schon früh die Mutter, den Vater vor der Geburt verloren hat, lebt mit seiner Frau und seinen beiden Kindern einsam am Rande der Wüste. Sie sind Nomaden. Durch den gewaltsamen Tod seiner Frau und des Säuglings, verliert Yasemine, die alles mit ansehn [...]

    2. If there is such a thing as “baroque” language, the Tuareg author living in France writes in it. Not unlike Fatima Mernissi, I am in awe of Mokeddem as a person, who grew up in a family of illiterate nomads in the desert of southern of Algeria to become first a medical doctor (mostly helping Magrebi immigrants till death threats forced her to close her clinic) and then a full-time writer. Although Mokeddem also informs her Western audience about her heritage and has a hidden feminist agenda, [...]

    3. I first met Malika Mokeddem through her 2005 (published in English in 2009) memoir My Men, a book that had languished on my “to read” list for many years. I wish I would have gotten around to it sooner. Because that would have given me the chance to read more of her books by now.I really, really like Mokeddem. We come from completely different places but I feel like I can relate to her – not the “growing up as a girl in a family of recently settled nomads in Algeria” thing, but the “ [...]

    4. In uiterst barokke taal geschreven roman over de nomade Mahnoud en zijn dochter Yasmine. De roman begint ijzersterk met een harde, wrede scene, maar gaat dan op gekunstelde wijze verder als een ontwikkelingsroman met vleugjes documentaire. Na enkele ijzersterke sprookjesachtige magische passages over de originele figuur El-Majnoun verzandt de roman: verhaallijnen worden geïntroduceerd maar niet afgemaakt, een grote finale blijft uit en de roman eindigt met een zwaar teleurstellend open einde. D [...]

    5. This book is amazing! I recommend it a lot. It’s the story of a man of the desert who looks for her lost daughter in Africa, against heat, thieves, a burning sun, sand storms and fierce locusts that destroy it all

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