I'jaam: An Iraqi Rhapsody
An inventory of the General Security headquarters in central Baghdad reveals an obscure manuscript. Written by a young man in detention, the prose moves from prison life, to adolescent memories, to frightening hallucinations, and what emerges is a portrait of life in Saddam Hussein’s Iraq.
In the tradition of Kafka’s The Trial or Orwell’s 1984, I’jaam offers insight into life under an oppressive political regime and how that oppression works. This is a stunning debut by a major young Iraqi writer-in-exile.
" . . . a fictional memoir -- of a student/poet in solitary detention for having ridiculed Saddam Hussein. . . . The student's dreams, memories and fantasies are eerily beautiful . . ." -- The Los Angeles Times
" The prisoner intersperses terse reports of his ordeal among memories of a literary rebellion, friendship and love. . . . chilling short novel . . ." -- Booklist, June 1, 2007
"He evokes a Baghdad heavy with Orwellian overtones . . . often he strikes the right chord, to haunting effect." -- The Village Voice
Sinan Antoon has been published in leading international journals and has co-directed About Baghdad, an acclaimed documentary about Iraq under US occupation.
Pre-Owned (from a private library)
Size: 130 x 190 mm
City Lights Publishers, 2007
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