Translated from the Arabic by Roger Allen
"A skillful novelistic judgement on the CIA special renditions after 9/11, there are also occasional shades of One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest."—Banipal
"Himmich is one of the most innovative and prolific novelists in contemporary
Morocco. This is an important work of literature in a masterful
translation."—Jonathan Smolin, associate professor of Arabic, Dartmouth College
Philosopher and writer Bensalem Himmich is the author of a number of works in both Arabic
and French. He has won a number of prizes and distinctions, including the Naguib Mahfouz
Prize (American University in Cairo, 2002), the Sharjah-UNESCO Prize (2003), the Diploma
and Medal of the Academic Society of Arts and Letters (Paris, 2009), and the Prize of the
Academy of Floral Games (Toulouse, France, 2011). My Torturess was nominated for the
International Arabic Fiction Prize in 2011.
Roger Allen is the Sascha Jane Patterson Harvie Professor Emeritus of Social Thought and
Comparative Ethics in the School of Arts and Sciences at the University of Pennsylvania,
where he is professor emeritus of Arabic and comparative literature. Among his translations
are Bensalem Himmich’s A Muslim Suicide and The Polymath.
Book Description »[Close »]
In this harrowing novel, a young Moroccan bookseller is falsely accused of being
involved in jihadist activities. Drugged and carried off the street, Hamuda is
"extraordinarily rendered" to a prison camp in an unknown location where he
is interrogated and subjected to various methods of torture.
Narrated through the voice of the young prisoner, the novel unfolds in
Hamuda’s attempt to record his experience once he is finally released after six
years in captivity. He paints an unforgettable portrait of his captors’ brutality
and the terrifying methods of his primary interrogator, a French woman known
as Mama Ghula. With a lucid style, Himmich delivers a visceral tale that explores
the moral depths to which humanity is capable of descending and the
limits of what the soul can endure.
View other series books on Middle East Literature in Translation.
6 x 9, 248 pages