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‘We are rich in mass graves’ : representing a history of violence through Êzîdî poetry

Smith, Mairéad (2020) In British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies
Abstract

The 2014 Êzîdî Genocide caused a rupture in the social fabric of the Iraqi religious Êzîdî minority. A search for meaning in the aftermath of violence has caused a group of Şingalî poets to reconstruct memories of the past through their narration in Arabic prose poetry. A narrative analysis has been used on a selection of poems written and interviews conducted with five poets. I investigate their trauma process through adopting the theory of a cultural trauma, viewing ‘trauma’ from a social constructivist point of view, in an attempt to advance and challenge trauma theory and position the importance of representation in empowering lost voices. Through reconstructing the past in the present, the poets narrate counter-histories which give... (More)

The 2014 Êzîdî Genocide caused a rupture in the social fabric of the Iraqi religious Êzîdî minority. A search for meaning in the aftermath of violence has caused a group of Şingalî poets to reconstruct memories of the past through their narration in Arabic prose poetry. A narrative analysis has been used on a selection of poems written and interviews conducted with five poets. I investigate their trauma process through adopting the theory of a cultural trauma, viewing ‘trauma’ from a social constructivist point of view, in an attempt to advance and challenge trauma theory and position the importance of representation in empowering lost voices. Through reconstructing the past in the present, the poets narrate counter-histories which give access to untold experiences which lie outside the narration of a singular event, but instead comprise of stories of the everyday in which violence is embedded. In recounting these memories, the poets serve to historicize their suffering while rebuilding the foundation of the collective and relating themselves to wider communities fostering attachments, solidarity and a critical vision for the future.

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author
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
epub
subject
in
British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies
publisher
Taylor & Francis
external identifiers
  • scopus:85082472512
ISSN
1353-0194
DOI
10.1080/13530194.2020.1746235
language
English
LU publication?
no
id
a6c44bc9-f58a-4438-b4d6-b08a8ff3087f
date added to LUP
2020-04-24 15:33:25
date last changed
2020-04-25 01:57:39
@article{a6c44bc9-f58a-4438-b4d6-b08a8ff3087f,
  abstract     = {<p>The 2014 Êzîdî Genocide caused a rupture in the social fabric of the Iraqi religious Êzîdî minority. A search for meaning in the aftermath of violence has caused a group of Şingalî poets to reconstruct memories of the past through their narration in Arabic prose poetry. A narrative analysis has been used on a selection of poems written and interviews conducted with five poets. I investigate their trauma process through adopting the theory of a cultural trauma, viewing ‘trauma’ from a social constructivist point of view, in an attempt to advance and challenge trauma theory and position the importance of representation in empowering lost voices. Through reconstructing the past in the present, the poets narrate counter-histories which give access to untold experiences which lie outside the narration of a singular event, but instead comprise of stories of the everyday in which violence is embedded. In recounting these memories, the poets serve to historicize their suffering while rebuilding the foundation of the collective and relating themselves to wider communities fostering attachments, solidarity and a critical vision for the future.</p>},
  author       = {Smith, Mairéad},
  issn         = {1353-0194},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {03},
  publisher    = {Taylor & Francis},
  series       = {British Journal of Middle Eastern Studies},
  title        = {‘We are rich in mass graves’ : representing a history of violence through Êzîdî poetry},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13530194.2020.1746235},
  doi          = {10.1080/13530194.2020.1746235},
  year         = {2020},
}