Home / Regular Issue / JSSH Vol. 30 (2) Jun. 2022 / JSSH-8423-2021


Eurocentrism Reconsidered: (Re)writing the History of the ‘Other’ in Tariq Ali’s Shadows of the Pomegranate Tree and The Book of Saladin

Zakir Hussain and Binod Mishra

Pertanika Journal of Social Science and Humanities, Volume 30, Issue 2, June 2022

DOI: https://doi.org/10.47836/pjssh.30.2.14

Keywords: Culture, Eurocentrism, historiography, marginalization, other, postcolonial theory

Published on: 9 June 2022

This article examines the reconstruction of Eurocentric representations of religious minorities of post-Reconquista Spain and Jerusalem through Tariq Ali’s novels, Shadows of the Pomegranate Tree (1992) and The Book of Saladin (1998). These novels suggest that the reconfiguration of history and the analysis of the traumatic experiences of characters such as Zuhayr and Saladin challenge the essentialist notion of Eurocentrism. The paper explores the narrative approaches and procedures employed in the novels to articulate the sufferings caused by the sidelining and elimination of Muslim and Jewish minorities. The study relies on concepts formulated and explicated by postcolonial critics like Fanon, Said, and Spivak in their critical works as its theoretical premise. We argue that the postcolonial outlook has the potential to challenge Eurocentric historical accounts, as it revives the forgotten memories of the “Other” and intertwines these memories to form new compatibility across ethnocultural and religious polarization. This study demonstrates that revealing the brutality implicit in the reasonable practices of nation-building conditions causes a crisis in Eurocentric historiography.

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ISSN 0128-7702

e-ISSN 2231-8534

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