On the Road: Leïla Sebbar's Fugitive Heroines

Mortimer, Mildred
June 1992
Research in African Literatures;Summer1992, Vol. 23 Issue 2, p195
Academic Journal
Literary Criticism
The article discusses the treatment of the theme of migration and exile in the works of Algerian writer Leïla Sebbar. Exile is the unhealable rift forced between a human being and a native place, views prominent author in this context, Edward Said. Said studies exile as a universal phenomenon. Sebbar shares Said's cultural space, the intersection of occidental and oriental cultures, as well as his perspective on orientalism, a concept that both view as a projection of the Westerner's fantasy. The daughter of a French mother and an Algerian father, Sebbar recreates the world of marginalized immigrants in order to lessen her own personal sense of exile. During the past decade, she has written seven novels that explore the world of the Beurs, the second generation of Maghrebian immigrants who live in the urban ghettos of France. The article verifies the premise that physical displacement results in contrapuntal awareness by focusing on Sebbar's fugitive heroines.


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