Negotiating Space and Time: Knowing the Past in the Present in Elif Shafak’s "The Forty Rules of Love"

By Majed Hamed Aladaylah.

Published by The International Journal of Critical Cultural Studies

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: March 22, 2017 $US5.00

The representation of the fictional narrative discourse becomes the subject of critical interpretation in contemporary fiction. This issue procreates vast changes in the technique of narration and the experimentation of writing fiction. The present research questions ontological and transformational notions as narrated by the representation of fictional discourse. These notions are interrogated by Elif Shafak, a Turkish novelist; she attempts to expose the matrix of the relationship between the past and present in “The Forty Rules of Love” (2010). The novel investigates two different centuries, the thirteenth century and the twenty-first centuries. Shafak combines the past and the present to rejuvenate the past and supplies a new narrative of the past. This amalgamation and juxtaposition deconstructs the conventional, substituting the conventional narrative through the act of juxtaposition, that the past and the present are welded in one spatial construction. Shafak addresses new spaces and unlocks the secret space of spiritual transformation and freedom of the self, through spiritual journeys undertaken by narrative discourse. The novel offers insights into many rules of love, which becomes an icon of transformation. Shafak’s response to this mutability is given by her protagonists who becomes new born, liberated, and relieved by “Sufism” and comprehending new spaces, lives, and realities reflected in the reshaping of the narrative representation.

Keywords: Juxtaposition, Past, Present, Space, Spiritual, Transformation

The International Journal of Critical Cultural Studies, Volume 15, Issue 1, March 2017, pp.31-37. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: March 22, 2017 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 457.745KB)).

Dr. Majed Hamed Aladaylah

Associate Professor of Literature, Department of English, Mu’tah University, Al-Karak, Jordan