Names and Naming
• Characters exist in
relation to Suleiman
• Suleiman = Emperor
of the Ottoman
– expanded the empire
– instigated social and
– enemy to the Faith
who suffered defeat
under the Christians.
Poetry of language
• e.g. description of Rashid being
dragged to the gallows
– ‘He reminded me of the way a shy
woman would resist her friends’ invitation
to dance, pulling her shoulders to her ears
and waving her index finger nervously in
front of her mouth’ (p. 186).
• Lepcis Magma
– symbolically a fallen civilisation
Heat / Summer
• represents Hell, as
Suleiman tries to
avoid Hell by
over the bridge to
• Its glare stupefies the
people leaving only
the children to jostle
each other around
• No school allows
Suleiman to have the
freedom to observe
• Calm - just at the end of the road.
• Suleiman looks to be cooled and cleansed
from the dirty activities he faces day-to-
• Tries to take Kareem into it to seek some
solace from his grief but Kareem resists.
• almost drowns Bahloul , exerts power and
gives in to the base urges
• symbolism of
picture of Baba
– loyalty to the
regime and the
strains on family
• ‘My Land, Your Land’
– represents the political ‘games’ of the
• squabbles and fights -a microcosm for
the violence in the country.
• Nasser and his Typerwriter
– Subversive pamphlets
• Burning of the books
– Violent oppression – removal of
intellectuals who might questions
• Democracy Now
• Moosa – poet and lover of language
– Najwa condemns S for being ‘a
coward who accepted slavery
over death’ (p. 15). over time.
• Suleiman and Najwa –
storytellers in their own right
• Ustath Rashid – scholar of history
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