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Rethinking Orient

In Search of Sources and Inspirations


Edited By Adam Bednarczyk, Magdalena Kubarek and Maciej Szatkowski

The contributions in this book address a vast variety of questions concerning the sources and mutual inspirations in Oriental and European literatures. The authors discuss selected texts from both historical and synchronic perspectives. They reveal and scrutinise the sedimented layers in their search for the original as well as for the repetitive and universal. The book revolves around the creative reception of one’s own cultural heritage and of works which originated in other cultures.

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The Hadj to Utopia: Reiteration of Moslem Society on Al-Qahira in Kim Stanley Robinson’s Red Mars (Juraj Bakoš)


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Juraj Bakoš

Palacký University Czech Republic

The Hadj to Utopia: Reiteration of Moslem Society on Al-Qahira in Kim Stanley Robinson’s Red Mars

Abstract: In his epic trilogy about the colonization of the planet Mars, Kim Stanley Robinson opens and deals with many possible problems of such a venture. Written in 1990s, the books present a bleak vision of the near future where the humankind sets on a quest to build a settlement on another planet to disburden the overpopulated Earth. Amongst the various whether national or ideological enclaves rapidly growing on Mars, important focus is placed on the orthodox Moslem community, the so called Qahiram Mahjaris. Mars, or Al-Qahira in Arabic, with its vast and inhospitable deserts might be a suitable place at least for Bedouins to start a new life on their own. The aim of the paper is to analyze the way Robinson addresses and debunks the stereotypes of the Moslem marriage ties and the role of women in the Moslem society. The author also discusses the eligibility of the concept of transferring the traditions of Orient to a completely new environment on a hostile planet and the possibility of a reiteration of the traditional and pure Moslem society in the late 21st century.

Key words: Mars, utopia, Moslem society, science fiction

The history of imagining people or even societies on Mars is now more than 130 years old. These concepts began to form in...

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