Mary Jo Muratore's most recent article -- "The Art of Narrative Deferral: Madani's L'histoire peut attendre" -- has appeared in Neohelicon
In this essay, Muratore argues that:
"L’histoire peut attendre, the sole novel authored by celebrated Moroccan poet Rachida Madani, is a complex, if not confounding, work, one that contests and overtly muses upon the implicit and explicit tenets of narrative construction. From the outset, the author weaves a text that catches readers off guard and keeps them off balance as they grapple with an amalgam of poetic invocations and personal reflections, antithetical assertions and images, dueling narrators, and a commingling of the fictional and the real, the past and the present, the physical and the metaphysical. The framing narrative, the macro-text, depicts the comings and goings of fellow passengers on a train, but no figure of prominence emerges among the throng of traveling companions to draw or sustain the reader’s focus for any length of time. Though these fellow passengers are occasionally targeted for extended commentary, none prove to be aesthetically significant. What does emerge from these chaotic and mismatched threads is a deep and sustained probing of the creative process, its muteness, its inexpressibility, its unruliness, as well as its purgative potential. This complex meta-textual enterprise encapsulates the self-sustaining production of non-mimetic referentiality and invites us gradually, progressively, compellingly to confront a stunning poetics of perpetual deferral and of infinite regress."