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The Hikayat Abi l-Qasim, probably written in the 11th century by the otherwise unknown al-Azdi, tells the story of a gate-crasher from Baghdad named Abu l-Qasim, who shows up uninvited at a party in Isfahan. Dressed as a holy man and reciting religious poetry, he soon relaxes his demeanour, and, growing intoxicated on wine, insults the other dinner guests and their Iranian hometown.Widely hailed as a narrative unique in the history of Arabic literature, the Hikayah also reflects a much larger tradition of banquet texts. Painting a picture of a party-crasher who is at once a holy man and a rogue, he is a figure familiar to those who have studied the ancient cynic tradition or other portrayals of wise fools, tricksters and saints in literatures from the Mediterranean and beyond. This study therefore compares theHikayah, a mysterious text surviving in a single manuscript, to other comical banquet texts and party-crashing characters, both from contemporary Arabic literature and from Ancient Greece and Rome.
Number of Pages: 200
Genre: Literary Criticism
Series Title: Edinburgh Studies in Classical Arabic Literature
Publisher: Edinburgh Univ Pr
Author: Emily Selove
Street Date: March 1, 2016
Item Number (DPCI): 248-09-7579
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