Journal of  Agricultural Sciences

Vol. 3 (
1), pp.027-032,
January 2013

 ISSN: 2276-7770 




DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15580/GJAS.2013.1.111212259


Behind the
Hidden Face of Eve: Alifa Rifaat’s Distant View of a
Minaret as a Metaphor


Ogbeide O. Victor


Department of English and Literary Studies, Faculty of
Arts, Ekiti State University, 

Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State,


Email: ogbeide_v @ yahoo.com


This paper is an imaginative flight, with Alifa Rifaat as
guide, to the closed world of the typical Muslim woman
living in a patriarchal Muslim society. Behind her veil of
invisibility lie her silent pains, sexual dissatisfaction
and emotional anguish which are often male-inflicted in
their chauvinistic ambition to continue to oil the machinery
of patriarchy; an institution that has attracted many
unislamic accretions and man made oppressive anti-woman
practices over the years. Her reflection of the women as
voiceless and powerless in deference to the status quo
notwithstanding, the paper contends that by “daring” to
portray many of the norms and attitudes related to women in
her society, Rifaat has contributed in no small measure to
widening the frontiers of women liberation struggle all over
the world.
Keywords: Patriarchal, Muslim, Society, Feminism,
Veil, Metaphor, invisibility.


Adebayo Aduke (1996). “Tearing the Veil of Invisibility: The Role
of West African Female Writers in Contemporary Times” (Ed) Adebayo, Aduke
Feminism and Black Women’s Creative Writing. Theory, Practice, Criticism.
Ibadan; AMD Publishers, (37-56).

Angelou Maya (1984). I Know why The Caged Bird Sings. London:
Virago. David Mary (1995). Wole Soyinka: A Quest for Renewal. Madras, India:
B.I Publications, (13-19).

Emecheta Buchi (1977). The Slave Girl. Glasgow: Fontana/Collins.
_****______(1979).The Joys of Motherhood. London: Heinemann.

Gauthier Xaviere (1981). “Is there such a Thing as Women’s
Writing?” New French Feminisms (Trans. Marilyin A August. (Eds) Elain Marks and
Isabelle de conitivion. Sussex: The Harvester Press, (161-164).

Johnson-Davies, Denys (1983). “Translator’s Foreword” Alifa
Rifaat’s Distant View of a Minaret and Other stories. Essex: Pearson Education.

Miles Maria (1983/89). “Towards a Methodology for Feminist
Research” (Eds) Bowles and Klein. Theories of Women’s Studies. London/New York;
Routledge,  (117-139).

Nnaemeka Obioma (2007). “Bringing African Women into the
Classroom: Rethinking Pedagogy and Epistemology” (Eds) Olaniyan T and Quayson
A, African Literature an Anthology of Criticism and Theory. M.A. USA; Blackwell
Publishing, pp571-577.

Nwapa Flora (1998). “Women and Creative Writing in Africa” (Ed).
Nnaemeka O, Sisterhood is Global: Feminism and Power from Africa to the
Diaspora, (89-99).

Rifaat Alifa (1983). Distant View of a Minaret and Other Stories.
Essex; Pearson Education. Saadawi Nawal El (1980). The Hidden Face of Eve.
London: Zed Books.

Sanusi Ramoni and Olayinka Wumi (2012). “Blind Devotion, Violence
and Trauma in the Works of Ka Maiga, Bassek and Mpondi-Ngolle” Papers in
English and Linguistics. Vol. 13, (183-208).

Stratton Florence (2009). The Routledge Encyclopedia of African
Literature. (Ed) Simon Gikandi. Milton Park, Abingdon Oxon: Routledge. Senft
Theresa (1995). “Writing (and) Independence: Gayatic Spivak and the Dark
Continent of Ecriture Feminine” Women and Performance.  Vol. 7(2) Issue 14-15, (275-280).

Thiam Awa (1986). Black Sisters, Speak Out: Feminism and
Oppression in Black Africa. (Translated by Dorothy Blair) London: Pluto Press.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *