A Thousand Rooms of Dream and Fear by Atiq Rahimi

By Atiq Rahimi

Farhad is a standard pupil, twenty-one years outdated, attracted to wine, girls, and poetry, and negligent of the spiritual conservatism of his grandfather. yet he lives in Kabul in 1979, and the early days of the pro-Soviet coup are approximately to alter his lifestyles without end. One evening Farhad is going out ingesting with a chum who's approximately to escape to Pakistan, and is brutally abused via a gaggle infantrymen. a couple of hours later he slowly regains awareness in an unexpected apartment, overwhelmed and careworn, and thinks first and foremost that he's lifeless. a wierd and gorgeous girl has dragged him into her domestic for safekeeping, and slowly Farhad starts off to believe a forbidden love for her--a love that embodies an offended compassion for the discomfort of Afghanistan's girls. As his brain sifts via its stories, fears, and hallucinations, and the outlines of fact begin to harden, he realizes that, if he's to flee the warriors who desire to end the activity they began, he needs to go away every little thing he loves at the back of and be able to get to Pakistan.

Rahimi makes use of his tight, spare prose to ship the reader deep into the fractured brain and feelings of a rustic stuck among faith and the political machinations of the world's superpowers.

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Sample text

Arabic script shows certain affinities with Syriac on one hand and with Nemara on the other; but its precise genesis is uncertain, since barely two or three pre-Islamic specimens survive. Its ligaturing system resembles both Syriac and Nemara, particularly in that the same six letters resist ligaturing to a following letter in all three scripts. As in Nemara, there is a large number of ambiguous letter forms, and as in Syriac diacritic dots seem occasionally to have been used for differentiating these; yet the use of diacritic dots is to start with exceedingly rare, and has in fact never become absolutely regular practice (as it has in Syriac).

Having already reached the hearts of his listeners through the effect of his verses, he left the elucidation of their meaning to be dealt with by his transmitter. Hence, from ancient times Arabic poetry required its commentatorscum-transmitters. They attached themselves to the poet as admirers and as difFusers of his verses, learning them by heart and declaiming them after his manner or in accordance with his directions. Often a transmitter would himself be a poet and, in turn, also have someone to transmit his own verses.

Normal usage was, and is still today, either to use no short vowel marking at all (as is the case in most modern printing), or to use it extremely sparingly and only at points of maximum ambiguity. Yet another problem confronting anyone dealing with Arabic literature is the lack of an adequate punctuation system. Medieval Arabic scholarship concentrated more on the spoken than the written word, and the scholar normally became acquainted with a text by hearing it read aloud by a teacher, and did not have to rely solely on the written text for his understanding of how a passage was to be phrased.

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