As I waited this morning on news of a rumored coup in Tunisia, I thought I’d re-read Kamel Riahi, who says of his stories that they reflect “the lives of the poor [in Tunisia], the homeless, the shoe polishers, الشطّار, young criminals, prostitutes, crushed employees, sailors and street peddlers.”
Yes, I realize that you can’t understand the goings-on of the “real” world by reading fiction. Nonetheless, the “untameable Tunisian volcano,” as Riahi is described in the preface to Emerging Arab Voices, has a fresh and interesting literary voice. And what else am I to do? I’m sure my political analysis would be dreadful.