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Paper Topic:

Tales from the Thousand and One Nights

p Tales from The Thousand and One Nights Summary

A huge collection of stories from Arabia , India , Persia , and even China have been compiled to form the novel `Tales from Thousand and One Nights . There are a number of editions of this book and not all of them are similar . These stories reflect the highly civilized Islamic world of 9th to 13th century that had a vast span to include the modern day Spain , North Africa , Arabian Peninsula , Iraq , Afghanistan , India , and beyond . As such , they are a valuable source of information

to us on the prevailing socio-cultural , religious and economic issues at the time This essay focuses on the Islamic attitude towards gender , race and minority during those days as depicted in these stories . In analyzing these stories every care has been made to remain objective , while refraining from hasty generalizations . theless , a pattern on attitude towards women , slaves and minorities can be easily discerned We have tried to arrive at those patterns based examples directly from the book . There is also the issue of translation . The translation by Burton is more racist in character than other translations . Moreover the authors of these stories are unknown nor do we have any idea on what kind of research these authors did (if any ) before writing

The One Thousand and One Night opens with a story that leads to the next and the next and so on like the Pandora 's Box till the unresolved issue in the opening story resolves

The story begins with the powerful king Shahariyar who marries everyday and kills the bride before repeating the same ritual next day his revenge towards women because his wife whom he loved the most had betrayed him . This cruelty and oppression towards women continue day after day for three years until a courageous and intelligent woman Sheherazade , the Vizier 's daughter decides to cure the king of his cruel aberration

In this story we see two aspects of women . One , women are depicted as treacherous and disloyal towards men . Two , they have an enormous sexual appetite . And finally , they are intelligent and wise . Let us see some instantiations in the story

When King Shahryar saw this infamy of his wife and concubines he became as one distraught and he cried out , `Only in utter solitude can man be safe from the doings of this vile world ! By Allah , life is naught but one great wrong ' This utterance relates to the instance when the king saw his wife and concubines indulge in sex with slaves in his absence (Sir Richard Burton , 12 . Earlier , he came to know of his younger brother 's disloyal wife because of whom his younger brother had lost the will to live . He saw one more instance of the voracious sexual appetite of a woman who insisted on sexual intercourse with him . These instances robbed the peace of his mind and he concluded no woman in the world is chaste and faithful . Filled with revenge , He also...

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