This Blinding Absence of Light. Tahar Ben Jelloun

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9780141022826: This Blinding Absence of Light. Tahar Ben Jelloun

In this extraordinary non-fiction novel, based on a true story, Tahar Ben Jelloun traces the experiences of Salim who, in 1971, took part in a failed coup attempt to oust King Hassan II of Morocco. With sixty others Salim was incarcerated in a secret prison complex in the Moroccan desert: he was to remain there for nearly twenty years. In starkly eloquent, beautiful prose, Ben Jelloun relates the prisoners' experiences as they struggle to survive. The son of a witty, feckless courtier who disowns him, Salim tells stories to keep sane - from the suras of his beloved Koran to the plot of A Streetcar Named Desire. Even in the darkest, most terrible conditions, sympathy, insight, the human quest for meaning and understanding, never desert Salim. The resulting novel is a wrenching yet exquisite celebration of the human spirit and its determination to survive. 'A masterpiece' Judges of the IMPAC award 'a sad and splendid book' New York Times Book Review

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About the Author :

Tahar Ben Jelloun was born in 1944 in Fez, Morocco, and emigrated to France in 1961. He is one of North Africa's foremost novelists. Tahar Ben Jelloun's novels include The Sacred Night which received the Prix Goncourt in 1987 and Corruption.

From Publishers Weekly :

Based on an incident involving starvation and torture in Morocco, Prix Goncourt-winner Jelloun's latest novel is a disturbing, grisly account of how a prisoner survived a 20-year internment in which he was locked away in a desert tomb. The narrator, Salim, was captured during an unsuccessful 1971 attempt to overthrow Prince Hassan II, who then secretly sent his enemies off to an isolated, makeshift prison. The conditions approached the horror of a concentration camp: the prisoners were confined in dark, cramped chambers, fed a subsistence-level diet and given no medical attention. They were allowed to communicate, however, which helped them cope with such ghastly tortures as having scorpions thrown into their cells. In one particularly hellish incident, a prisoner who breaks his arm is devoured by gangrene and cockroaches. Jelloun writes eloquently and poignantly about the prisoners' various coping tactics, from Salim's recitation of half-remembered stories from The Arabian Nights and scripts from American films to a memorable section in which a dove lands in one of the cells and is passed from inmate to inmate. Freedom eventually comes with bribing a guard, resulting in the intervention of activists from Amnesty International, but this harrowing tale of deprivation and degradation is a frightening reminder of man's seemingly boundless capacity for evil. (May 1)Forecast: Jelloun, a high-profile novelist (Corruption) and critic in Europe who writes regularly for the major dailies of several countries, will likely be feted by intellectual journals in the U.S., but chances are this novel won't receive the kind of attention it did in France, where it was a bestseller, despite heightened interest in human rights and the Arabic-speaking world.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

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Tahar Ben Jelloun
Edité par Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom (2007)
ISBN 10 : 0141022825 ISBN 13 : 9780141022826
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Description du livre Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 2007. Paperback. État : New. Language: English . Brand New Book. In this extraordinary non-fiction novel, based on a true story, Tahar Ben Jelloun traces the experiences of Salim who, in 1971, took part in a failed coup attempt to oust King Hassan II of Morocco. With sixty others Salim was incarcerated in a secret prison complex in the Moroccan desert: he was to remain there for nearly twenty years. In starkly eloquent, beautiful prose, Ben Jelloun relates the prisoners experiences as they struggle to survive. The son of a witty, feckless courtier who disowns him, Salim tells stories to keep sane - from the suras of his beloved Koran to the plot of A Streetcar Named Desire. Even in the darkest, most terrible conditions, sympathy, insight, the human quest for meaning and understanding, never desert Salim. The resulting novel is a wrenching yet exquisite celebration of the human spirit and its determination to survive. A masterpiece Judges of the IMPAC award a sad and splendid book New York Times Book Review. N° de réf. du libraire AAZ9780141022826

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Description du livre Penguin. État : New. 2007. Paperback. 'a sad and splendid book' New York Times Book Review Num Pages: 208 pages. BIC Classification: FA; FYT. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 197 x 129 x 14. Weight in Grams: 150. . . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. N° de réf. du libraire V9780141022826

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Description du livre Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 2007. Paperback. État : New. Language: English . Brand New Book. In this extraordinary non-fiction novel, based on a true story, Tahar Ben Jelloun traces the experiences of Salim who, in 1971, took part in a failed coup attempt to oust King Hassan II of Morocco. With sixty others Salim was incarcerated in a secret prison complex in the Moroccan desert: he was to remain there for nearly twenty years. In starkly eloquent, beautiful prose, Ben Jelloun relates the prisoners experiences as they struggle to survive. The son of a witty, feckless courtier who disowns him, Salim tells stories to keep sane - from the suras of his beloved Koran to the plot of A Streetcar Named Desire. Even in the darkest, most terrible conditions, sympathy, insight, the human quest for meaning and understanding, never desert Salim. The resulting novel is a wrenching yet exquisite celebration of the human spirit and its determination to survive. A masterpiece Judges of the IMPAC award a sad and splendid book New York Times Book Review. N° de réf. du libraire AAZ9780141022826

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