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Title: Al-Marzubani in the context of Arabic literary theory : an analytical study of Al-Muwashshah
Author: Sanni, Amidu Olalekan
ISNI:       0000 0004 2682 4788
Awarding Body: University of London
Current Institution: University of London
Date of Award: 1989
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The aim of this study is to examine al-Marzubän i's contribution to Arabic literary theory, as reflected in his so far available complete work on the subject, that is al- Muwashshah. His documentary importance with regards to many reports that would not have otherwise been available, he be°t n9 their exclusive source, compensates for his not being one of the great system builders and places classical literary theory in his debt. The Introduction is a brief survey of the early history of Arabic literary criticism, with particular attention to factors responsible for its evolution, as well as an examination of the early works on the subject. Each of the chapters is divided into two sections. The first section of Chapter One gives a detailed biography of al- Marzubäni. Its second part reviews al-Muwashshah, within the context of material-presentation, source-selection, and source-utilisation. The major subjects of discussion among the theorists, as reflected in the literary corpora of the eras covered by al- Muwashshah, are examined in the other chapters. Prosodical defects are examined in the first section of Chapter Two, showing in a historical progression the development of the relevant concepts culminating in explicit categorisation by al-Marzubäni. The second section of this chapter analyses various poetic licenses, darurät al-shi`r, illustrated in al-Muwashshah. The arrangement followed in the analysis of the various categories contained in the chapters is other than that of the author. The reason being that although some sort of subtle order can be identified with the author's presentation, a more coherent and systematic order is required in order to reduce, or possibly, eliminate duplication and discursiveness not rarely encountered in the original arrangement. In Chapter Three, the concepts of originality and plagiarism are examined, and in particular, the development of the theory on sariqa. This is the theme of the first part of this chapter. That there was a remarkable gap between theory and application, resulting from either the use of non-literary criteria or inadequate perception of the contexts associated with specific illustrations of the concepts, is recognised by al-Marzubäni, and this is discussed in the second section of this chapter. Various propositions by theorists on the concept of lafz and ma `n ä are examined in the first section of Chapter Four, while the other section analyses the relationship between those propositions and their application, as illustrated by al-Marzubäni. Essentially, what we have tried to demonstrate is that the characteristic lack of order for which Arabic poetics was known in its nascent stage was remarkably improved by al-Marzubäni. This he was able to do by systematically reorganising the extant materials as well as by furnishing Arabic literary theory with a logical framework.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Center for Research Libraries
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available