Under the Tripoli Sky



❮KINDLE❯ ❆ Under the Tripoli Sky Author Kamal Ben Hameda – E17streets4all.co.uk A fascinating portrait of a pre Gaddafi society on the verge of changeTripoli in the A sweltering, segregated society Hadachinou is a lonely boy His mother shares secrets with her best friend Jamila A fascinating portrait of a pre Gaddafi society on the verge of changeTripoli in Under the Kindle - theA sweltering, segregated society Hadachinou is a lonely boy His mother shares secrets with her best friend Jamila while his father prays at the mosque Sneaking through the sun drenched streets of Tripoli, he listens to the whispered stories of the women He turns into an invisible witness to their repressed desires while becoming aware of his own.Under the Tripoli Sky

Kamal Ben Hameda born is a Libyan jazz musician and writer Born in Under the Kindle - Tripoli, he moved in his early twenties to France He now lives in the Netherlands Kamal has published several collections of poetry, and a novel titled La Compagnie des Tripolitaines The book was nominated for several literary prizes, and is due to appear in an English translation from Peirene Press in , under the title Under the Tripoli Sky.

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  • Paperback
  • 128 pages
  • Under the Tripoli Sky
  • Kamal Ben Hameda
  • English
  • 04 May 2017
  • 1908670169

10 thoughts on “Under the Tripoli Sky

  1. says:

    The city of Tripoli, bordering the Mediterranean in the 1960 s.In the footsteps and the mind of a young boy who prefers the company of his mother, her friends, Great Aunt s and girls who are not yet kept indoors, bound by the shackles of marriage, in a society where a river of seething discontent courses through the veins of many and the sexes barely tolerate each other and anyone who seems to have escaped the marriage trap is resented.The boy is privy to the thoughts and attitudes of women and The city of Tripoli, bordering the Mediterranean in the 1960 s.In the footsteps and the mind of a young boy who prefers the company of his mother, her friends, Great Aunt s and girls who are not yet kept indoors, bound by the shackles of marriage, in a society where a river of seething discontent courses through the veins of many and the sexes barely tolerate each other and anyone who seems to have escaped the marriage trap is resented.The boy is privy to the thoughts and attitudes of women and witnesses their lives, listens to their stories and absorbs their repressed desires as his own begin to awaken.The tea ceremony was the only part of the day when my mother and her friends could live their lives in real times and tell their own stories At last they could talk about dreams, longings and anxieties , all in the same breath and their bodies were at peace I sometimes wondered how these women who were all so different were able to spend hours at a time, each talking about her own god, her own people and thoughts, free to be wildly outspoken but without provoking any true conflict It was because they had no power to preserve and no possessions to watch over That was for the people on the other side of the wall the men, the sheikhs, the governors and their hunting dogs Scheming and calculating, diplomacy and power struggles were their domain Here with the women, my guardian angels, there were just words, spoken openly and easily, flitting and whirling about, a life force in themselves Without these moments of trusting abandon, they would have dried up with sorrow Or imploded as they toiled over their cooking pots.Here, great aunt Nafissa has had enough of the women bad mouthing her mother s childhood friend Jamila, words they speak when her mother leaves the room, making insinuating remarks about her secret life, and flushed with rage, she rails against them Leave Jamila alone, she cried Let her live her life Its only because you re jealous that you see evil in everything She and her friends allow themselves freedoms you don t have, freedoms you envy because your husbands keep you on a tight leash What would you have her do Stay at home like you, sitting on cushions and sucking on loukoums while you wait for men who never come home You think those women are living bad lives You make me laugh But you don t know when to hold your tongues, that s for sure, and you re full of spite And, anyway, it s not as if any of this has ever stopped you taking their money she added, always ready to speak out against injustice.It is not easy to read about a repressed patriarchal society without some glimmer of hope, but this is no fairy story, set in the pre Gaddafi society on the verge of change This is cultural insight beyond the normal bounds of the English language, thanks to the translation of Adriana Hunter and the passion of Peirene Press in bringing these kinds of stories into the mainstream

  2. says:

    Hadachinou, the young narrator, is growing up in Tripoli in the 1960s, after the Italian occupation and before Kadhafi It is a city of sand and dust where the sun blazes mercilessly, As the story starts, he has just been circumcised and although he should be joining the men s world, he is farfascinated by and attached to the world of secrets, the intimate world of women With great tenderness, he listens to them, follows them, gets close to one or two of them who awaken in him some desi Hadachinou, the young narrator, is growing up in Tripoli in the 1960s, after the Italian occupation and before Kadhafi It is a city of sand and dust where the sun blazes mercilessly, As the story starts, he has just been circumcised and although he should be joining the men s world, he is farfascinated by and attached to the world of secrets, the intimate world of women With great tenderness, he listens to them, follows them, gets close to one or two of them who awaken in him some desires.Hadachinou, still a little boy and a lonely character, unravels to us this very man dominated world where women organise themselves, support each other, have fun together and know how to hide their secrets They also know how to laugh about their men and trick them.Through Hadachinou, Kamal Ben Hameda Ben draws us brilliantly into the multiracial Tripoli, full of warm colours, spicy and perfumed hot air, and cool houses His writing is frank, warm and poetic A highy recommended story, which may also make the reader want to research the history of Libya Another inspiring short read from Peirene Press

  3. says:

    A novel with no voice, no soul, and no plot Why call it a novel It s a collection of unrelated stories that the author tried and obviously failed to connect It s my first time reading a Maya center publication and I m very skeptical of the way they choose books I struggled to finish the 104 pages novel which serves as a good example of disastrous writing My apologies for the negative critique but I m wondering what the author was thinking when he agreed to publish it Didn t he seek advice A novel with no voice, no soul, and no plot Why call it a novel It s a collection of unrelated stories that the author tried and obviously failed to connect It s my first time reading a Maya center publication and I m very skeptical of the way they choose books I struggled to finish the 104 pages novel which serves as a good example of disastrous writing My apologies for the negative critique but I m wondering what the author was thinking when he agreed to publish it Didn t he seek advice Very disappointed

  4. says:

    Interesting in its inside view on women s lives and men s but slightly meandering Tinged with magical realism as well, and am not exactly a fan of that Perhaps, that s why I wasn t extremely impressed However, the writing is poetic and I enjoyed that.

  5. says:

    Translated by Adriana Hunter.Set in Tripoli in 1960, Hadachinou is a young, lonely boy who is surrounded by the women in his life In the sweltering heat he sneaks through the sun drenched streets, listening in on the whispered stories of the women in his life He becomes an invisible witness to their repressed desires and solely becomes aware of his own.Under the Tripoli Sky is a very short book at 104 pages and it s a very meandering kind of story It s made up of little snap shots of Hadachin Translated by Adriana Hunter.Set in Tripoli in 1960, Hadachinou is a young, lonely boy who is surrounded by the women in his life In the sweltering heat he sneaks through the sun drenched streets, listening in on the whispered stories of the women in his life He becomes an invisible witness to their repressed desires and solely becomes aware of his own.Under the Tripoli Sky is a very short book at 104 pages and it s a very meandering kind of story It s made up of little snap shots of Hadachinou s life and the interactions with the different women in his life There s his mother and her friends, his aunts and cousins, and a young girl that helps out around his house He has a lot of freedom and because he s a child, he often goes unnoticed by his mother when she has her female friends in the house As he s unseen he can watch and listen from the side lines, and through his voyeurism he begins to be aware of women s desires and his own Though that doesn t mean he understands them The writing in Under the Tripoli Sky is poetic and immersive The heat, the sand and the sea are easy to imagine as Hadachinou explores his city There s almost a dreamlike quality to Under the Tripoli Sky as Hadachinou has so much freedom and a seemingly idyllic childhood But it s a dream that we, as the reader, know must come to an end as it s set before Gaddafi came to power and so the society in Tripoli in this story is quite different to what one might think of Tripoli and Libya today Under the Tripoli Sky is a coming of age tale about an inquisitive child Hadachinou may be privy tothan the adults in his life are aware but that doesn t mean he understands it all There s some interesting insights into Libyan society in the early 1960s, the troubles and traumas that face women but also how things do seem to be evolving, but overall it s a book that s composed of vignettes that don t leave a lasting impression

  6. says:

    In the 1960s, a young boy named Hadachinou moves between the public streets of Tripoli and the private spaces inhabited by his mother, her best friend, and other women of his acquaintance His age and size means he isn t viewed as a threat in Libya s patriarchal society, allowing him to blend in and go unnoticed in female spaces.It also means the women in his life are willing to be frank with their assessment of men His great aunt Naffia characterizes Libyan history as men the Greeks, the Ro In the 1960s, a young boy named Hadachinou moves between the public streets of Tripoli and the private spaces inhabited by his mother, her best friend, and other women of his acquaintance His age and size means he isn t viewed as a threat in Libya s patriarchal society, allowing him to blend in and go unnoticed in female spaces.It also means the women in his life are willing to be frank with their assessment of men His great aunt Naffia characterizes Libyan history as men the Greeks, the Romans, the Arabs, the Turks, the Italians abusing women to prove their virility and value She complains that the men are still doing it now even as society is changing, as Libya changes from an Italian colony to a kingdom ruled by King Idris.In this society, though, women have to carve out their own spaces and relationships In these spaces, the physical abuse they suffer at the hands of their husbands is forgotten for a moment because they are among those who understand In these spaces, the emotional abuse they suffer in a society that does not value them beyond their ability to bear children is forgotten for a moment because they can discuss their thoughts and views on the world Because, during the tea ceremony, at last they could talk about dreams, longings and anxieties all in the same breath, and their bodies were at peace.The most beautiful example of this is the relationship between Hadachinou s mother and her best friend, Jamila These women could be friends or lovers or sisters their relationship runs so deeply that those or s could be switched for and For Hadachinou, it s a relationship that isn t easy to define he doesn t always know why his mother shoos him from the room when Jamila visits Yet it is one that he describes so beautifully that I found myself highlighting passage after passage about this friendship.This is a slow, meandering novel were grouped passages it s difficult to call the chapters given how short this novella is do not always weave together seamlessly And as a coming of age story, I felt Hadachinou s story was underwhelming But the glimpses into women s spaces in pre Gaddafi Libya were poignant and made for a wonderful surprise for someone who purchased this novella on a whim

  7. says:

    For the majority of my existence, I have preferred the company of women to that of other men I m not going to speculate or philosophise about the reasons behind this, as it s difficult not to fall into generalisations, and this is a book review blog, not an exercise in armchair self psychologising It s just, this is my preference For the majority of my existence, I have also been a voracious reader So it was shocking to realise, halfway through reading Under the Tripoli Sky, that this was th For the majority of my existence, I have preferred the company of women to that of other men I m not going to speculate or philosophise about the reasons behind this, as it s difficult not to fall into generalisations, and this is a book review blog, not an exercise in armchair self psychologising It s just, this is my preference For the majority of my existence, I have also been a voracious reader So it was shocking to realise, halfway through reading Under the Tripoli Sky, that this was the first book I d ever read barring Roald Dahl s The Witches where the cast is entirely female, with the sole exception of the male protagonist and narrator I felt like Christian Bale in Velvet Goldmine Of course, being a cis straightish white guy, it s not at all rare for me to see people like me in books and films and so on, but this felt different, and I savoured it For the full review including thoughts on the novel s meandering structure, approach to Islam, and setting head over to my blog, Strange Bookfellows

  8. says:

    Hadachinou, a lonely boy, takes you in a journey Under the Tripoli Sky to see and hear stories During the tea time, he listens to his mothers friends stories they share everything about their lives, dreams, and hopes.This novel reveals the hidden side of Tripoli s closed society during 1960s through the eyes of women Aunt Zohra, Fatima, Nafissa, Jamila, Hadja Kimya It talks about how men treats women abusively, and how the this society sees women.Hadja Kimya is a sorceress whom many women Hadachinou, a lonely boy, takes you in a journey Under the Tripoli Sky to see and hear stories During the tea time, he listens to his mothers friends stories they share everything about their lives, dreams, and hopes.This novel reveals the hidden side of Tripoli s closed society during 1960s through the eyes of women Aunt Zohra, Fatima, Nafissa, Jamila, Hadja Kimya It talks about how men treats women abusively, and how the this society sees women.Hadja Kimya is a sorceress whom many women visited her for the sake of knowing about their future Sorcery practises are mentioned in this book since they are relevant to the Tripolitania society Quotes Anyone who doesn t know hate will never know love, and the things we don t want to see, the things we hide and keep locked away inside for too long, will get out sooner or later, they ll explode.Feelings are clouds and we can t do anything to stop the clouds

  9. says:

    This is one of the books I chose for my Around the World in 52 Books challenge I have never read any Libyan fiction or non fiction for that matter and I also have never met a Libyan in real life, so I must admit to knowing virtually nothing about this culture The book was very eye opening about a nation that has been under the shroud of segregation Told from the perspective of what was occurring in the 1960s, it is a story of one boy s innocence and how that innocence was exploited It wa This is one of the books I chose for my Around the World in 52 Books challenge I have never read any Libyan fiction or non fiction for that matter and I also have never met a Libyan in real life, so I must admit to knowing virtually nothing about this culture The book was very eye opening about a nation that has been under the shroud of segregation Told from the perspective of what was occurring in the 1960s, it is a story of one boy s innocence and how that innocence was exploited It was well written and a good plot, but does not stand out in my mind as being exceptional However, I am glad that I had the opportunity to read it as it did introduce me to literature which was totally new and foreign to me

  10. says:

    It s not much of a novel, but it is very evocative and offers a vision of daily life in Tripoli in the 60s We move around the city with a boy, and we visit different women whose inner personality is useless in their relationship with violent and rude men All of them share hate for their husbands and their conditions none of them is muchthan a piece of meat for sexual and brutal desires and a housewife There are no men in this story, but their presence ghost the story It s a short read It s not much of a novel, but it is very evocative and offers a vision of daily life in Tripoli in the 60s We move around the city with a boy, and we visit different women whose inner personality is useless in their relationship with violent and rude men All of them share hate for their husbands and their conditions none of them is muchthan a piece of meat for sexual and brutal desires and a housewife There are no men in this story, but their presence ghost the story It s a short reading but extraordinarily dense This story made me think that if half of the population don t have freedom, then no one has it And happiness doesn t look as anything reachable at all

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