Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The orientalism of Edgar Allan Poe: The allure of the "Middle East" in Aal-Aaraaf
by Al-Kamal, Sohaib Kamal Mahmood, M.A., Missouri State University, 2015, 129; 10003430
Abstract (Summary)

This thesis explores the Orientalist discourse in four of Edgar Allan Poe’s poems and two of his prose essays. The major aspects of Orientalism examined in Poe’s works rely on the theortical ideas of Edwad Said’s Orientalism and other ideas developed by important Arab writers. Said and other Arab writers agree that Islam is the locus of any study of Orientalism. This thesis focuses on the major role of Oriental imagery that it plays Poe’s early poems. It also examins two of his prose essays to help understand central aspects of Poe’s orientalia which are also reflected in his poems. The thesis centers on the elements of Oriental exoticism, Qur’anic imagery, Middle Eastern geography, ancient cities, local traditions, and intertextual relationships. The body of the thesis is mainly made up of three parts. The first part gives a brief survey of the definition of Orientalism and the role it played in the relationship between the West and the East throughout history. The second part throws light on the Orientalist reading of Edgar Allan Poe’s two essays“Review of Stephen’s Arabia Petraea” and “Palaestine” and his three poems: Israfel, To Helen, and The Doomed City. The third part extensively explores Poe’s abstruse poem Al-Aaraaf throughout the lense of the theory of Orientalism.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Baumlin, James S.
School: Missouri State University
School Location: United States -- Missouri
Source: MAI 55/03M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Comparative literature, Middle Eastern literature, British and Irish literature
Keywords: Edgar Allan Poe, Edward Said, Islamicism, Literary borrowings, Middel Eastern Lit., Orientalism
Publication Number: 10003430
ISBN: 9781339425740
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