Belletrista Blog


January 20, 2011

I’m sure you’ll have seen news about the political upheavel that’s happening in Tunisia. Watching the news, I’ve realised that I know very little about the country. Other North African states have a much higher profile in the British press – Tunisia is really only known as a holiday destination.

So any suggestions for books written by Tunisian women that will give me a glimpse of life there?

Posted by Char

5 Comments for this entry

  • Jana

    I haven’t come across any books written by women from Tunisia. The only book I’ve read from the country is Albert Memmi’s “Pillar of Salt” and that is set in the 1930s and 40s. I’ll be interested also if anyone has any suggested titles by women.

  • Fanny

    Char, I have read very little from the North Africa region, so I’m useless on this question. But oddly, Banipal – the UK-based journal of Arabic literature – did its most recent issue on Tunisian writers. You can look at the list of contributors here:

  • Char

    Thanks very much for the link to Banipal – I’ll definitely be seeking out writing by the women they highlight.

  • M. Lynx Qualey

    It wasn’t really a great issue, but there was (among the lit by women) a standout story by Rachida al-Charni. Habib Selmi writes beautiful female characters, although that’s obviously not at all the same thing.

    Boy, most of the Tunisian authors I know are men.

  • Jana

    @M. Lynx Qualey: Well, if you don’t know many, that does bode well for the rest of us! There may be something in the Feminist Press’s Women Writing Africa: Volume IV, the Northern Region. I don’t have a copy on hand though.

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