This paper examines Ahmad Shawqi's Siniyah and Al-Buhturi's Siniyah from a critical perspective that views the relationship between these two works as a case of both mimicry and presence. Mimicry is an essential component of poetic practice that cannot be overlooked and is evident of one’s self-awareness in its present time and circumstances. This paper seeks to reevaluate and criticize this relationship in ways that might rejuvenate interest in poetic influence as the means of the latter poet to prove himself and his presence when compared to predecessor poets. This perception is based on the imitating poet’s fit as seen by predecessor poets, and that the anxiety he has about this situation makes him see poetic mimicry as an opportunity to prove his superiority and, therefore, his right to join the poetic companionship to which he belongs. He also seeks to revise the course of the poem which he is influenced by and correct its path. As Shawqi accompanies his predecessor Al-Buhturi and is influenced by him, he acknowledges Al-Buhturi’s superiority. However, he asserts that the strengths of AlBuhturi’s poem need to be revised to correct the path of the poem. Therefore, the mimicry of the poem becomes a field of struggle between the two powerful poets. This paper consists of three sections. The first section reviews the critical debate on mimicry in Shawqi's Siniyah. The second one shows that mimicry in Shawqi’s Siniyah was his means to revise the structure of al-Buhturi’s Siniya in light of its relationship to the traditions of the structure of the Arabic poem. The third one reveals Shawqi's vision that transcends that of Al-Buhturi’s, and how Shawqi was able to prove his presence independent of his predecessor and his poem.
Ababneh, Sami and Hamdn, Yousef
"The Problem of Mimicry and Presence in Ahmad Shawqi's Siniyah,"
Association of Arab Universities Journal for Arts مجلة اتحاد الجامعات العربية للآداب: Vol. 18:
2, Article 7.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.aaru.edu.jo/aauja/vol18/iss2/7