Hoda El Shakry: Printed Matter(s): Critical Histories of Maghrebi Cultural Journals

I’m currently working on my next book project, Printed Matter(s): Critical Histories of Maghrebi Cultural Journals, that aggregates and theorizes twentieth-century Arabic, Francophone, and bilingual journals from Algeria, Morocco, and Tunisia. Bridging the humanities and social sciences, Maghrebi cultural journals serialized and published fiction, alongside literary criticism, art and aesthetic theory, as well as political and social commentary. Fostering unique forms of cultural edification and intellectual refinement, these periodicals shed critical light on the evolution of literary forms, practices, and sensibilities within the undertheorized cultural archives of North Africa. I am particularly interested in how Maghrebi journals blur conventional periodizations of Arab/ic cultural production and demarcations of genre, in addition to complicating dominant theoretical paradigms that tether print culture to a teleological Euro-American modernization thesis. To that end, I’m investigating the concepts, intellectuals, and readership networks that these periodicals staged across North and Sub-Saharan Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, Asia, and Europe. These rhizomatic flows of cultural capital signal subversive geopolitical exchanges operating outside the dominant logics of colonial mediation.