Macbeth in the Multidimensional Narrative of the Unnecessary Woman

Awfa Hussein Aldoory, ِArwa Hussein Aldoory


No text is an isolated island. This basically indicates that every text may share a relationship of interaction with other texts, even though this relationship is not always recognized. The new created text out of the mating relationships between texts is what Graham Allen (2011, p.35) describes as “a practice and productivity”. The new created text can be the product of the interaction between different social texts, or between a social text on the one hand and a literary one on the other hand, or between different literary texts. The process of intertextuality, however, often conveys some sort of significance and purpose in its new context, whether it is to emphasize the meaning or importance of a specific occurrence, to invoke comparison between the two texts, or even to create humor by, for example, ridiculing the original text. Within this context Rabih Alameddine’s An Unnecessary Woman is a literary encyclopedia that is crowded with many allusions to different literary texts through the story of Aaliya, the aged woman and the translator who are preoccupied with translating literary works from English and French into Arabic. When each book is translated Aaliya packages it carefully and places it in the maid’s room where it will lie, with the other translations, unread. Alameddine’s narrative style which includes many allusions to many literary references may remind the reader of T. S. Eliot’s The Waste Land. Like Eliot, Alameddine refers to many literary texts, including Shakespeare’s Macbeth. This paper aims at analyzing the historical background, characters, symbols, themes, and motives of Alameddine’s An Unnecessary Woman in order to explore how the text meets Shakespeare’s Macbeth in certain points of similarities.



Appropriation; Intertextuality; Women; War; Lady Macbeth

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Copyright (c) 2017 Awfa Hussein Aldoory, ِArwa Hussein Aldoory

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