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The City as Memory: Migration, Space, and the Changing Perceptions in Muḥammad Zafzāf’s Novel Al-Mar’ah wa Al-Wardah (The Woman and The Rose)
This paper reads Moroccan author Muḥammad Zafzāf’s novel al-Mar’ah wa al-Wardah in order to explore the of the city of Casablanca as seen from outside by a self-exile. This novel provides the prism through which Zafzāf would denounce the flaws of Moroccan society by bringing two urban experiences and reminiscences. I argue that this work seeks to highlight the theme of the city as memory and reflection on the disenchantment of post-independence Morocco, a textual space dominated by criticism, feelings of anger, and indifference. I conclude that Zafzāf does not directly criticize urban discrimination or geographical displacement, but rather offers us a close exegesis of Casablanca and what it stands for in a country that was/is still in the making of new possibilities for a better future of Morocco.
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