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Salim Barakat’s novel, Sages of Darkness: “Who is Benav’s son Bekas?”

Year 2022, Volume 8, Issue 1, 82 - 98, 25.01.2022
https://doi.org/10.21600/ijoks.1028134

Abstract

In his novel Sages of Darkness (Fuqahā’ al-Ẓalām), we encounter Salim Barakat as a writer of psychological realism, which this paper attempts to show by a comparison to Fyodor Dostoevsky’s ground-breaking novel Crime and Punishment (1866). Barakat’s main protagonist is a Kurdish Sufi Mullah, a protector of his rural community in al-Qamishli, Jazira in Ottoman times. With the sudden appearance of “dried up fields,” Mullah Benav carries on with his undertone of murmured prayer and reliance on the techniques of Kurdish Sufi practice (somewhat similar to Jewish Kabbalistic practice) to solve the problem. And then, lo and behold, a fantastical event occurs with the birth of a baby son whom the Mullah calls “Bekas.” Sages of Darkness has five long chapters of approximately fifty pages each, comparable to the original serial publication of Fyodor Dostoevsky’s novel Crime and Punishment. It introduces an aside on the psychological cause and result of child molestation by respected personages within the society and especially within the education system. The present paper uses quotations from the first fifty pages of Sages of Darkness. Long passages from the book are quoted because no English translation has as yet been published. I anticipate completing the translation in about 7 months.

References

  • Abdulkarim, C., Ismael, S. (2019). The Burden of Colonialism and Alienation in the Modern Kurdish Novel. International Journal of Kurdish Studies, 5 (2): 373-392. DOI: https//doi.org/10.21600/ijoks.530519
  • Ahmadzadeh, H. (2007). In Search of a Kurdish Novel that Tells us Who the Kurds Are. Iranian Studies, Taylor and Francis, www.jstor.org/stable/25597416.
  • Barakāt, S. (1985). Sages of Darkness, Translated by Matti Peled from the original Arabic (Bison Press, Nicosia Cyprus): Am Oved Publishers, Tel Aviv (1994)—Afterword by Matti Peled (1994).
  • Barakāt, S. (1994). Fuqahā’ al-Ẓalām [Sages of Darkness]. Baghdad: Al-Mada Publishing House (1st edition).
  • Butt, A. (2018). The Unimaginative Symbols of Salim Barakat. International Journal of Kurdish Studies, 4 (2): 294-308. https://doi.org/10.21600/ijoks.454197
  • Karacan, H., & Butt, A. (2021). The Antiquity of Kurmanji Kurdish and the Biblical Book of Nahum. Prizren Social Science Journal, 5(1), 90-96. https://doi.org/10.32936/pssj.v5i1.206.
  • Karacan, Hasan, Butt, Aviva, (2021). On the Use of Poetry in Oral and Written Literature: The Voice of the Obscure, ECLSS Proceedings Book, Conference, Kyrenia, TRNC. 18-19, 2021: 128-136. https://eclss.org/publicationsfordoi/proceedingskyreniapr0cdt11act8boo8k2021b.pdf
  • Kliger, I. (2010). Shapes of History and the Enigmatic Hero in Dostoevsky: The Case of “Crime and Punishment.” Comparative Literature, 62(3), 228–245. http://www.jstor.org/stable/40962856
  • Saleh, W. A. (2021). Death and Dying in the Qur’an, in Troubling Topics, Sacred Texts: Readings in Hebrew Bible, New Testament, and Qur’an, edited by Roberta Sterman Sabbath. Berlin/Boston: Walter de Gruyter 345-355. https://doi.org/10.1515/9783110650617-020.
  • Psychological Realism in Crime and Punishment (Manual). https://www.ipl.org/essay/Psychological-Realism-In-Crime-And-Punishment-PCCQSC6SQU

Salim Barakat’s novel, Sages of Darkness: “Who is Benav’s son Bekas?”

Year 2022, Volume 8, Issue 1, 82 - 98, 25.01.2022
https://doi.org/10.21600/ijoks.1028134

Abstract

In his novel Sages of Darkness (Fuqahā’ al-Ẓalām), we encounter Salim Barakat as a writer of psychological realism, which this paper attempts to show by a comparison to Fyodor Dostoevsky’s ground-breaking novel Crime and Punishment (1866). Barakat’s main protagonist is a Kurdish Sufi Mullah, a protector of his rural community in al-Qamishli, Jazira in Ottoman times. With the sudden appearance of “dried up fields,” Mullah Benav carries on with his undertone of murmured prayer and reliance on the techniques of Kurdish Sufi practice (somewhat similar to Jewish Kabbalistic practice) to solve the problem. And then, lo and behold, a fantastical event occurs with the birth of a baby son whom the Mullah calls “Bekas.” Sages of Darkness has five long chapters of approximately fifty pages each, comparable to the original serial publication of Fyodor Dostoevsky’s novel Crime and Punishment. It introduces an aside on the psychological cause and result of child molestation by respected personages within the society and especially within the education system. The present paper uses quotations from the first fifty pages of Sages of Darkness. Long passages from the book are quoted because no English translation has as yet been published. I anticipate completing the translation in about 7 months.

References

  • Abdulkarim, C., Ismael, S. (2019). The Burden of Colonialism and Alienation in the Modern Kurdish Novel. International Journal of Kurdish Studies, 5 (2): 373-392. DOI: https//doi.org/10.21600/ijoks.530519
  • Ahmadzadeh, H. (2007). In Search of a Kurdish Novel that Tells us Who the Kurds Are. Iranian Studies, Taylor and Francis, www.jstor.org/stable/25597416.
  • Barakāt, S. (1985). Sages of Darkness, Translated by Matti Peled from the original Arabic (Bison Press, Nicosia Cyprus): Am Oved Publishers, Tel Aviv (1994)—Afterword by Matti Peled (1994).
  • Barakāt, S. (1994). Fuqahā’ al-Ẓalām [Sages of Darkness]. Baghdad: Al-Mada Publishing House (1st edition).
  • Butt, A. (2018). The Unimaginative Symbols of Salim Barakat. International Journal of Kurdish Studies, 4 (2): 294-308. https://doi.org/10.21600/ijoks.454197
  • Karacan, H., & Butt, A. (2021). The Antiquity of Kurmanji Kurdish and the Biblical Book of Nahum. Prizren Social Science Journal, 5(1), 90-96. https://doi.org/10.32936/pssj.v5i1.206.
  • Karacan, Hasan, Butt, Aviva, (2021). On the Use of Poetry in Oral and Written Literature: The Voice of the Obscure, ECLSS Proceedings Book, Conference, Kyrenia, TRNC. 18-19, 2021: 128-136. https://eclss.org/publicationsfordoi/proceedingskyreniapr0cdt11act8boo8k2021b.pdf
  • Kliger, I. (2010). Shapes of History and the Enigmatic Hero in Dostoevsky: The Case of “Crime and Punishment.” Comparative Literature, 62(3), 228–245. http://www.jstor.org/stable/40962856
  • Saleh, W. A. (2021). Death and Dying in the Qur’an, in Troubling Topics, Sacred Texts: Readings in Hebrew Bible, New Testament, and Qur’an, edited by Roberta Sterman Sabbath. Berlin/Boston: Walter de Gruyter 345-355. https://doi.org/10.1515/9783110650617-020.
  • Psychological Realism in Crime and Punishment (Manual). https://www.ipl.org/essay/Psychological-Realism-In-Crime-And-Punishment-PCCQSC6SQU

Details

Primary Language English
Subjects Social
Journal Section Makaleler
Authors

Aviva BUTT> (Primary Author)
Sydney University
0000-0003-4710-4475
Australia

Publication Date January 25, 2022
Application Date November 25, 2021
Acceptance Date January 1, 2022
Published in Issue Year 2022, Volume 8, Issue 1

Cite

Bibtex @review { ijoks1028134, journal = {International Journal of Kurdish Studies}, issn = {2149-2751}, eissn = {2149-2751}, address = {}, publisher = {Hasan KARACAN}, year = {2022}, volume = {8}, number = {1}, pages = {82 - 98}, doi = {10.21600/ijoks.1028134}, title = {Salim Barakat’s novel, Sages of Darkness: “Who is Benav’s son Bekas?”}, key = {cite}, author = {Butt, Aviva} }
APA Butt, A. (2022). Salim Barakat’s novel, Sages of Darkness: “Who is Benav’s son Bekas?” . International Journal of Kurdish Studies , 8 (1) , 82-98 . DOI: 10.21600/ijoks.1028134
MLA Butt, A. "Salim Barakat’s novel, Sages of Darkness: “Who is Benav’s son Bekas?”" . International Journal of Kurdish Studies 8 (2022 ): 82-98 <http://www.ijoks.com/en/pub/issue/68153/1028134>
Chicago Butt, A. "Salim Barakat’s novel, Sages of Darkness: “Who is Benav’s son Bekas?”". International Journal of Kurdish Studies 8 (2022 ): 82-98
RIS TY - JOUR T1 - Salim Barakat’s novel, Sages of Darkness: “Who is Benav’s son Bekas?” AU - AvivaButt Y1 - 2022 PY - 2022 N1 - doi: 10.21600/ijoks.1028134 DO - 10.21600/ijoks.1028134 T2 - International Journal of Kurdish Studies JF - Journal JO - JOR SP - 82 EP - 98 VL - 8 IS - 1 SN - 2149-2751-2149-2751 M3 - doi: 10.21600/ijoks.1028134 UR - https://doi.org/10.21600/ijoks.1028134 Y2 - 2022 ER -
EndNote %0 International Journal of Kurdish Studies Salim Barakat’s novel, Sages of Darkness: “Who is Benav’s son Bekas?” %A Aviva Butt %T Salim Barakat’s novel, Sages of Darkness: “Who is Benav’s son Bekas?” %D 2022 %J International Journal of Kurdish Studies %P 2149-2751-2149-2751 %V 8 %N 1 %R doi: 10.21600/ijoks.1028134 %U 10.21600/ijoks.1028134
ISNAD Butt, Aviva . "Salim Barakat’s novel, Sages of Darkness: “Who is Benav’s son Bekas?”". International Journal of Kurdish Studies 8 / 1 (January 2022): 82-98 . https://doi.org/10.21600/ijoks.1028134
AMA Butt A. Salim Barakat’s novel, Sages of Darkness: “Who is Benav’s son Bekas?”. Kurdish Studies. 2022; 8(1): 82-98.
Vancouver Butt A. Salim Barakat’s novel, Sages of Darkness: “Who is Benav’s son Bekas?”. International Journal of Kurdish Studies. 2022; 8(1): 82-98.
IEEE A. Butt , "Salim Barakat’s novel, Sages of Darkness: “Who is Benav’s son Bekas?”", International Journal of Kurdish Studies, vol. 8, no. 1, pp. 82-98, Jan. 2022, doi:10.21600/ijoks.1028134


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