Lebanese literature, part of Arabic literature in Arabic .

For several centuries Lebanon has also been open to Western culture, especially French, so that Lebanese literature in French has developed.

French crusaders had already come into contact with Lebanon, and in 1535 Francis I reached an agreement with the Ottomans to set up trading establishments and mission schools. From the 19th century onwards, texts were published in French. In the years 1920–44, France also used its special political position as a protective power to spread and consolidate its language and culture in Lebanon. Around 50% of the Lebanese speak French, even if the official language is Arabic and the use of French is increasingly declining in favor of English. Correspondingly, some of the authors (mostly Christian denominations) use French as a literary means of expression.

According to itypeauto, the French-language Lebanese literature is divided into four stages of development: The first phase of a battle literature against the Ottomans extends from the end of the 19th century to 1920; a. Searched in the Phoenician past – the »Manifesto« of this literature is »La montagne inspirée« (1934) by Charles Corm (* 1894, † 1963)  - from 1945 to 1975 the third phase in which Lebanese literature followed suit French literary scene (symbolism, surrealism) and this in turn inspired. The fourth phase began in 1975 and is, in some cases heavily involved in politics, characterized by experiences of war, destruction and suffering.

From 1910 onwards, the drama “Antar” by Checri Ganem (* 1861, † 1929) introduced the French-speaking audience to Lebanese literature interwoven with national legends; In 1920 Corm founded the magazine “La Revue Phénicienne” and in 1934 published the collection “Auteurs libanais de langue française”. French poetry experienced a new expression of its traditional forms through Jacques Tabet (* 1885, † 1956), Élie Tyane (* 1887, † 1957), Hector Klat (* 1888, † 1977) and Michel Chiha (* 1891, † 1954).

After the Second World War, G. Schehadé achieved international renown through his dramas; in his poetry he combines Arab and French heritage. Other important poets are Fouad Abi-Zeid (* 1915, † 1958) and Nadia Tueni (* 1935, † 1983). The novel is represented by Fardj Allah Haïk (* 1909, † 1994) and others. with the trilogy “Les enfants de la terre” (1948–51) and Andrée Chédid et al. with »Le sommeil délivré« (1953). Especially lyrical texts by Fouad Gabriel Naffah (* 1925, † 1983), Salah Stétié (* 1929), Claire Gebeyli (* 1935), Vénus Khoury-Ghata (* 1937), Elie Maakaroun (* 1946), M. Haddad Achkar (* 1947) and Nohad Salameh (* 1947) shape the image of Lebanese literature of the 1970s and 1980s, probably because they most directly express the moods of grief, anger, melancholy, resignation and longing. The more recent civil war novel is particularly influenced by Etel Adnan (* 1925), S. Nassib, Ghassan Fawaz (* 1947; “Les Moi volatils des guerres perdues”, 1996) and Elie-Pierre Sabbag (* 1955). In the historical novel, A. Maalouf and A. Najjar metaphorize the war, which they see as a conflict between religious communities and ethnic groups, but also between Orient and Occident.


With the kidnapping of two Israeli soldiers on July 12. In 2006, Hezbollah provoked a military operation by Israel across the Lebanese border: Air strikes were directed against Hezbollah positions in Beirut and southern Lebanon, but also against the country’s infrastructure, in order to prevent the militia from getting weapons. The attacks claimed several hundred civilian victims and triggered a mass exodus. At the same time, Hezbollah militias fired at targets in northern Israel and v. a. the port city of Haifa intensively with rockets (numerous fatalities, 300,000 refugees). Israeli troops tried to push Hezbollah back through a ground offensive in southern Lebanon. On August 11, 2006, the UN Security Council passed Resolution 1701, the v. a. with their request for an on August 14th the beginning of the ceasefire was accepted by the conflicting parties; In addition, the resolution provided for the withdrawal of the Israeli military and an increase in UNIFIL troops from 2,000 to 15,000 men.

After Prime Minister Siniora refused to increase the number of Shiite ministers and thus to grant a blocking minority, Hezbollah and Amal announced their withdrawal from the cabinet; henceforth they contested the legitimacy of the government and called for new elections. At the end of May 2007, the UN Security Council decided to set up an international tribunal against the Syrian protests to clarify the background to the attack on Rafik al-Hariri.

After Lahoud’s term of office ended on November 23, 2007, the office of president remained vacant. Although the political-denominational camps agreed on the previous commander-in-chief of the armed forces, M. Suleiman, as a compromise candidate for Lahoud’s successor, the pro-Syrian opposition made their final approval dependent on far-reaching concessions.

In May 2008, the clashes between Hezbollah and supporters of the Sunni future movement in Beirut escalated into open fighting, in which Hezbollah was able to assert itself militarily. Finally, with the mediation of the Arab League and the leadership of Qatar, talks began in Doha between representatives of the Siniora government and the Shiite opposition. On May 21, 2008, both camps agreed to form a government of national unity. However, the question of disarming the Hezbollah militias remained open. Finally, on May 25, 2008, Suleiman was elected President and sworn in immediately afterwards. The government of national unity met on July 16, 2008 for its constituent meeting.

Lebanese Literature

Lebanese Literature
Tagged on: