The 1952 Free Officers Coup in Egypt set in motion a burst of creative commercial activity that touched nearly all corners of the Arab world. Fundamentally at odds with and ultimately transcendent of the ideological parameters of the revolutionary regimes, the art of the post-revolutionary decades constituted an Arab boom, I argue, a broad, transmedial movement epitomized above all by a complex interplay of dialectical forces: doubt and conviction, motion and stasis, individuality and collectivity. Focusing on four prominent examples (from Egypt, Tunisia, and Morocco), this article shows that the evolution of the Arab boom occurred neither over time nor space, but in varying degrees of separation between the symbolic imperative of nationalism and the logical extreme of concrete experience. “Form” in this most radical instance becomes “the deeper logic of the content itself” (Jameson, Marxism and Form 329). And it is here, as I suggest in the final section, that the true revolution begins.


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pp. 260-275
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