Reception of Bicultural Identity in Arabic Diaspora Literature: The Works of Elia Abu Madi in Qisshat Al-Adabi Al-Mahjary

  • Fadlil Munawwar Manshur Faculty of Cultural Sciences, Universitas Gadjah Mada, Yogyakarta, Indonesia
Keywords: reception, bicultural identity, diaspora Arab poetry, authors, readers, SIERC


Literature by the Arab diaspora in the United States has promoted dialectical interpretations of authors' cultural identities, balancing their ancestral cultural identities with those of their new country. In regards to the bicultural identity found in the Arabic-language poetry of Elia Abu Madi, it can be seen that the poet produced several discourses portraying a bicultural reality. The historical essence of Arabic diaspora literature is found not only in its social expressions and representations, but also in the interactions of Arabic and American culture that have produced a bicultural identity. It consists of five key concepts: sign analysis, which functions to reveal the meaning of signs or symbols in the material object; interpreter analysis, which functions to discover the correlations between authors' intents and readers' horizons of expectation; effect analysis, which functions to reveal the influence of literary works on their readers; reference analysis, which functions to reveal authors' repertoires; and context or conditions analysis, which functions to reveal the bicultural identity of authors. This research concludes that, in the author's bicultural identity, the United States is positioned as a prosperous country of dynamic multiculturalism, where people are passionate in their work and art. Meanwhile, Lebanon is positioned as a country where people live mechanically, facing hardship and minimal productivity owing to their lack of security. Conversely, although the United States is prosperous and safe, owing to its orientation towards religious pluralism, its people are more positivistic and material in their lives. They thus tend to ignore spiritual aspects.


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