March 31, 2024

“The Blind Sinbad”: Self-Narrative as a Marginal National Identity

The Blind Sinbad

Share This Story, Choose Your Platform!

In her tenth novel “The Blind Sinbad” (published by Takween Publications), Kuwaiti writer Buthayna Al-Essa presents one of her most mature artistic works in terms of language, form, and structure. She narrates her story peripherally, with her primary protagonist, the marginalized character, being the nine-year-old girl Manayer. She lost her mother in a seemingly accidental incident, a victim of an incomplete honor crime. Yet, with skill and intelligence not immediately evident, she crafts her narrative on the margins, starting against the backdrop of the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in 1990. However, the story does not fully delve into this event, instead making it a backdrop to the events, intersecting with the fates of her characters.

Spanning 330 pages divided into six numbered chapters titled sequentially, the “The Blind Sinbad” novel seems to carry a deeper meaning within. With each announcement of a new chapter, it marks a significant stride in the narrative, a pivotal turning point in plot development. The narrative thread begins before the occupation, during the occupation, extending thirty years beyond it. This comprehensive and profound perspective poses questions about the significance of the two narratives, the narrative of occupation, and the narrative of betrayal, whether they are factual, mere fabrications, or foggy visions filled with imaginative gaps.

The narrative is shaped by irony:

Already a member, just Login here to continue reading, or Subscribe Today "FOR FREE" and get access to our exclusive digital literary treasures!!

Share This Story, Choose Your Platform!