Women of Sand and Myrrh PDF Ê Women of PDF \ Sand

It took me a while to pin down my feelings for this book It raises so many, it was really hard to wade through them all and work out what I thought of the book as a whole.The book is 4 intertwining stories about 4 different women within a very strict, restrictive Islamic society within the Middle East The best I can find is Saudi Arabia is probably the closest with these restrictions I loved that this was from the women s perspective which gave us an insight into a world half of us would neve It took me a while to pin down my feelings for this book It raises so many, it was really hard to wade through them all and work out what I thought of the book as a whole.The book is 4 intertwining stories about 4 different women within a very strict, restrictive Islamic society within the Middle East The best I can find is Saudi Arabia is probably the closest with these restrictions I loved that this was from the women s perspective which gave us an insight into a world half of us would never see.The book is split into 4 parts, each part with a different woman telling their story The women pop up in other women s stories as they are all connected but your perspective is changing throughout the book We have Suha from Lebanon who s husband has a contract in this country and they have moved there for him to work for a while Tamr, who is the daughter of a sheikh and his concubine from Turkey, but is a native to this country and a student of Suha s at the local womens TAFE Suzanne, an American housewife who again s husband has a contract in this country, yet she finds all men find her exotic and desirable in this country and never wants to leave And Nur, who is incredibly spoiled by her very wealthy husband, but there is so muchto that relationship.Some of these women I completely empathised with Some I was appalled with But I understood most of them They were all products of this restrictive society And it made me so glad that I could drive and go where I wanted, when I wanted, without a man, I can work, I can be educated, I can leave my house without a man I m related or married to, I can wear what I like and so muchIt was one of those books that immersed you in were you were and I think that s really important, as so many of us write off these places We don t think about them We know about them but we don t think about them, as they make us angry and so it s easier not to And we forget the women within them.It s important to remember.Forreviews visit Many of the reviews, I believe, are unfair The English translation was heavily edited The name of the book, and therefore, the meaning of the story was altered Even the order of the perspectives were swapped around This definitely changed our idea of who was the protagonist and who s story we should really be following If this book was read as it is told in its original form, we would have seen it as Al Shaykh intended This story is very important for Middle Eastern feminism, identity, and Many of the reviews, I believe, are unfair The English translation was heavily edited The name of the book, and therefore, the meaning of the story was altered Even the order of the perspectives were swapped around This definitely changed our idea of who was the protagonist and who s story we should really be following If this book was read as it is told in its original form, we would have seen it as Al Shaykh intended This story is very important for Middle Eastern feminism, identity, and sexuality, and I hold it as a very important book to women all across the globe The lives of four women intertwine in this unknown desert state somewhere in the middle east The author s colloquial use of language and metaphors gives the novel a post modern feel The author gives voices to four women from various socioeconomic classes The issues addressed varies from what today s society would call archaic or pedantic the contrasting nature of complexities the women face makes up the overarching arc Understanding the clash of modernism and culture is these parts of the w The lives of four women intertwine in this unknown desert state somewhere in the middle east The author s colloquial use of language and metaphors gives the novel a post modern feel The author gives voices to four women from various socioeconomic classes The issues addressed varies from what today s society would call archaic or pedantic the contrasting nature of complexities the women face makes up the overarching arc Understanding the clash of modernism and culture is these parts of the world is necessary for a better appreciation of the novel The everyday stories of women isn t all that different and it somehow drastically is Be it sexual diversity or economic freedom, women have to claw the walls to make a superficial dent let alone an everlasting one With these struggles playing in the background, the author picks some and makes her characters face them I, we, need to understand the superficiality of a narrative doesn t necessarily mean the issues don t exist Its just that the characters have chosen not to play it in this space and time I cant believe they edited the English version of this book for marketing purposes, this is like when Arab translators edit Simon De Beauvoir books claiming its too hard for us to understand this rating is for the english version, the original book is 4.5 stars. A powerful and moving novel, by the Arab world s leading woman novelist, about four women coping with the insular, oppressive society of an unnamed desert state So Women of Sand and Myrrh is a better book than most people are giving it credit for, albeit not a fantastic one Read itlike a Middle Eastern Virginia Woolf novel, and it makessense The news here is not that hey, women living in unnamed generic Islamic countries can feel oppressed, but that Hanan Al Shaykh, in 1980 something, was writing such a nuanced account of the very specific ways that female sexuality could be circumscribed and or redirected in such a world The internal f So Women of Sand and Myrrh is a better book than most people are giving it credit for, albeit not a fantastic one Read itlike a Middle Eastern Virginia Woolf novel, and it makessense The news here is not that hey, women living in unnamed generic Islamic countries can feel oppressed, but that Hanan Al Shaykh, in 1980 something, was writing such a nuanced account of the very specific ways that female sexuality could be circumscribed and or redirected in such a world The internal focus of the characters mimics the inward looking cultural s of Al Shaykh s setting it s a feature, not a flaw, of her style That said, no, there s not much plot, the pacing is painfully slow and roundabout, and the frustration one feels with the characters doesn t exactly endear them to readers I don t know if I m comfortable with the way this depicts women and hysteria It is working well with tropes of isolation and displacement, but there still seems this very archaic model of women who are forced to remain in domestic spaces who just descend into alternate forms of madness, self directed trauma, hysteria, dramatic actions, etc while the men are not only completely stable but almost become two dimensional background characters to thispredominant running narrative Just a few I don t know if I m comfortable with the way this depicts women and hysteria It is working well with tropes of isolation and displacement, but there still seems this very archaic model of women who are forced to remain in domestic spaces who just descend into alternate forms of madness, self directed trauma, hysteria, dramatic actions, etc while the men are not only completely stable but almost become two dimensional background characters to thispredominant running narrative Just a few initial thoughts Spectacular Al Shaykh is a powerful writer and draws the reader very quickly into the world s of her unhappy, unfulfilled characters The technique of dividing the novel into four sections, each in first person and narrated by a different character, made it feellike a collection of connected short stories, especially because of interruptions and overlap in the sequence of events.Al Shaykh s group of four is extremely diverse in all the important ways They share littlethan a locati Spectacular Al Shaykh is a powerful writer and draws the reader very quickly into the world s of her unhappy, unfulfilled characters The technique of dividing the novel into four sections, each in first person and narrated by a different character, made it feellike a collection of connected short stories, especially because of interruptions and overlap in the sequence of events.Al Shaykh s group of four is extremely diverse in all the important ways They share littlethan a location and a disconnection from one another and from society which is not to say that they are sociopaths though actually I would say that at least one of them is but that the society in which they are living does not permit them the sorts of lives they imagine themselves living An aside the exception to this is the sociopath, who is American and rather ordinary but for her blue eyes and pink skin Her desire to be unusual and desirable leads to a strong attachment to the unnamed middle Eastern country in which she finds herself, and she ignores and fights her unpleasant discoveries about the men and women around her Part of Al Shaykh s genius, as I see it, is the fact that she managed to make all of her characters reflect and inspire in the reader the feeling they all share about each other The reader experiences the process that each woman goes through meeting a new acquaintance with excitement and hope, then arriving at disillusionment and boredom coupled with a sometimes frantic striving to connect emotionally in spite of the obvious disjuncts, finally settling into a neurotic dislike of each maladaptive, ambivalent, disappointing so called friend While we finish each section glad not to be stuck with such a crazy or boring or passive aggressive or obsessed friend or lover, the book itself retains its allure to the last like the imaginary companion each character so unsuccessfully seeks I would venture to say that this is now one of my favorite books I enjoyed it because the characters were complex and their individual stories were interesting Contrary to what others might think, this is not just the story of Middle Eastern women, but portrays a very woman experience in general Though some of the same things may not currently occur in Western society, they once did.I m not great at writing reviews, but I just wanted to share that this book is not given enough credit Read it I would venture to say that this is now one of my favorite books I enjoyed it because the characters were complex and their individual stories were interesting Contrary to what others might think, this is not just the story of Middle Eastern women, but portrays a very woman experience in general Though some of the same things may not currently occur in Western society, they once did.I m not great at writing reviews, but I just wanted to share that this book is not given enough credit Read it with open eyes Loved this book More coming soon. Women of Sand and Myrrh


About the Author: Hanan Al-Shaykh

Hanan Al Shaykh Arabic is a Lebanese journalist, novelist, short story writer, and playwright.Al Shaykh was born into a conservative Shia Muslim family She received her primary education in Beirut, and later she attended the American College for Girls in Cairo Al Shaykh began her journalism career in Egypt before returning to Lebanon She has also lived in Saudi Arabia and is currently residing in London.Her short stories and novels feature primarily female characters in the face of conservative religious traditions set against the backdrop of political tensions and instability of the Lebanese civil war.


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