Research Article: 2021 Vol: 24 Issue: 1S
Sanaa Kamel Ahmad Shalan, The University of Jordan
Muna Mod Mahmoud Muhilan, The University of Jordan
Jordanian society image, Ahmad Hassan Al-Zu'bi, satirical writings, irony.
This research presents the image of Jordanian society to the satirical contemporary Jordanian writer Ahmad Hasan Al-Zu'bi in his satirical work: “Homeland Pains” 2001, “Swalif” 2008, and “Single Bleeding” 2013,an image formed of five pictures: social ,political, intellectual and artistic, religious and economic image by deconstructing these images into their internal objective components, and trying to monitor these components in a way that constitutes an image of the Jordanian society that was the focus and goal of Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu'bi’s writings, Who tried to present a realistic picture of his society away from lies, beautification, exaggerations, fallacies and denials, including alienation, injustice, oppression and deprivation, as well as the forces of injustice, alienation and oppression in it. The study also examined the experience of satirical writing with Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu'bi, with an attempt to explain the reason for his delinquency to this writing, and the interpretation of its predicates, symbols, goals and objectives.
An Overview of the Satirical Writing of Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi
The Jordanian writer Ahmad Hasan Al-Zu'bi considered one of the famous contemporary Jordanian names in satirical writing in Jordan, l with his satirical written materials through his articles published in newspapers, magazines and independent and televised series through dramatic episodes which he appears on (YouTube) under the name “Who Swallow My Country with Ahmad Hassan Al-Zu'bi” produced by Al-Arabi TV and "Khaleeha Ala Allah with Musa Hijazin and Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu'bi" produced by Rotana Radio Jordan, and in the form of animated cartoon films that were embodied by the Jordanian actor Musa Hijazin, using their voice, written and created by Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu'bi , the most famous of which is "Shoufet Aynak" produced by Taqarub co., however, this research will only address the written materials published in form of written collections that he personally published by gathering various satirical articles he wrote and published in different times, as well as published in the areas of cyberspace with the influence of websites on the Jordanian, Arab and international media space, especially on the popular website Sawaleif (http://sawaleif.com) which was established by Ahmad Hasan Al-Zu'bi to be a platform for his and other many new Jordanian writers mockery of who followed his method in satirical writing, thus, this website has become one of the most famous Jordanian and Arab satirical sites.
The Jordanian arena has witnessed satirical posts by many Jordanian writers, such as: Moanis Al-Razaz, Fakhri Kawar, Mousa Hawamdeh, Youssef Ghishan, Talaat Shana'a, Ahmed Abu Khalil, Muhammad Tumaleh, Kamel Nuseirat, Hind Khleifat, Basil Talozi, Majid Al Khawaja, and Sami Al Sharif. Ibrahim Al-Akhras, and Husam Al-Din Odat.
However, this study monitored the image of Jordanian society in the satirical writings of Ahmad Hassan Al-Zu’bi. The study divided it into more than one level representing different images that represent the overall picture of Jordanian society which Ahmad Hassan Al-Zu'bi portray in his writings through his bold pen, these levels are.
First: The social image of Jordanian society according to Ahmad Hassan Al-Zu'bi in his satirical writings.
Second: The political picture of Jordanian society according to Ahmad Hassan Al-Zu'bi in his satirical writings.
Third: The intellectual image of Jordanian society according to Ahmad Hassan Al-Zu'bi in his satirical writings.
Fourth: The religious image of the Jordanian society according to Ahmad Hassan Al-Zu'bi in his satirical writings.
Fifth: The economic picture of Jordanian society according to Ahmad Hassan Al-Zu'bi in his satirical writings.
However, this division does not mean that it is a complete division, but rather a classification attempt that is unable to draw clear and strict boundaries between the images because of the overlap of one with the other, because as a whole they form a single societal image, each part of which influences and represents the other, as it is naturally influenced by and fused with the other, especially since Ahmad Hasan Al-Zu'bi was haunted by the issues of his Jordanian society, which related to each other, trying to be a voice, a conscience and a mirror at the same time , he writes from the suffering, and in the voice of the people as one of them, trying to stand up to all of the issues, and penetrate into them to reach his goal of exposing everyone who offends this society, and tries to destroy it, or undermine its security and stability.
However, this division does not mean that it is a complete division, but rather that it is a classification attempt that is unable to draw clear and strict boundaries between the images because of the overlap of one with the other. Because as a whole they form a single societal image, each part of which influences and represents the other, as it is naturally influenced by and fused with him in one way or another, especially since Ahmad Hasan Al-Zu’bi was haunted by the issues of his Jordanian society, which are issues in which one intertwines with the other, and he is from He tries to be her voice, her conscience and her mirror at the same time; He writes from the womb of suffering, and in the voice of the people as an individual in it, trying to stand up to all of his issues, and penetrate into them to reach his goal of exposing everyone who offends this society, and tries to destroy it, or undermine its security and stability.
From this point of view, Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi dedicates his book "Single bleed" to his homeland, and says: "My blazed bleeding ... my country (Ahmad Hasan, 2013)", to declare this about his cause, which is homeland, Jordan, as he declares intention and awareness of this issue, defending his satirical writings that they are nothing but emotional outpourings, empty of vision or purpose, he says explicitly: “I stood for a long time in front of the texts of this book, some of which kept accompanying me from the airport of the bag to the port of truth, and others slept on with alienation, some of them have shaken off the dust of defeat from me when I was in withdrawal, have written me foggy with the ink of fog, There are some that have washed away the dust of defeat from me, and there are some that have written me foul with fog ink, among those texts was a lover who found me before I found her, and some of them combed my hoarse voice and breathed his music into the soul. (Ibid: p.2)
Why does Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi write his satirical writings?
We have the right to interpret this answer according to what we see in the writings of Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi, as we study these works from a critical point of view that has the right to interpret as long as it can explain this interpretation, but Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu'bi is determined to answer this question himself, saying: “Sarcasm is when forming governments becomes like lottery draw ... Why do we mock? Because of corruption, senior executive hereditary, the infections of hypocrisy, the pressure of moderation, upper class inflation, and the discouragement of national conscience, regionalism, and the "AIDS" of the interest transferred from the government to the representatives are the pains of a nation... Why do we make fun? Because our illness is chronic, our pain is profound, and our burns are of the first degree, and we have nothing in our hands but our sarcasm ointment that slightly heals the skin of our dignity. '' (Ahmad Hasan, 2001).
So Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi explicitly declares that he is writing his cynical creativity to expose corruption and fallacy, to denounce it, and to participate in its rejection, instead of being silent and humiliated by it. For him sarcasm is a tool for criticism, rejection and rebellion, not just a laughing statement that leads to nothing, but rather a loud, loud and revolutionary way of rejection, rebellion and revolution in order to correct the corrupt situations, and he does this without fear of blame, as he gives to whom he addresses a laughing rage that calls him to rejection, laughter in his writings comes with the price of knowledge, grief, anger and pain, leading to rejection, rebellion and revolution.
Based on all this, we are facing an intelligent creative experience that employs laughter that can permeate everywhere, and to address all social groups with the language of laughter, in order to convey his important intelligent messages that go beyond the walls of power and the tyranny of their peers and their oppression, and reach the crushed segments that fear the stick of power. This message also needs masks in its speech in order to deal with what it receives easily and without fear.
Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi presents his own method of anger, protest and revolution, which is a satirical writing method that appears outwardly to be a mere slapstick with no goal other than laughing, but in reality it is a historical, aesthetic and ethical document chronicling suffering and corruption and rejecting all of that. He also declares that his pen is his legitimate and sacred tool in his waged war against corruption, ugliness, decadence and shame, in the midst of his refusal to be a silent individual in a society that has mastered silence and humiliation and accepting its dispossession.
From this standpoint we can claim that satirical literature according to Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi is a type of resistant literature that rejects alienation, oppression and humiliation, and this sarcastic tool is a method, decision, vision, goal, professionalism and artistry, not just a tool of refusal and laughter as agreed without guidance. It is a smart, loose and flexible tool that is able to address the largest sector of the social strata.
Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi presented a black humor that cries as much as you laugh in an experiment to self-expression (Sanaa, 2007) with a complex mixture of acceptance and rejection of this world (10) within a linguistic structure that “produces sarcasm and bitterness at the same time.” (Zakaria, 2003).
It starts from a magical mixture that combines laughter and fear with the premise that “fear is the other side of laughter” (Ibid: p. 310). When the person meeting his literature laughs, he quickly feels the fear generated by the contradictions of the situation, so laughter in a state of fear confirms and deepens the feeling of it (Ibid: p. 338), starting from the paradox that “says something and means the opposite” (Abd al, 2013), and “embodies the contrast between appearance and reality of the situation” (Ibid: p.2), within a mixture of satire, sarcasm, absurdity and strange (Nabila, 1987), up to the main feature of the paradox, which is “the contrast between truth and appearance.” (Abd al, 2014).
Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi built his sarcasm on the basis of “shedding light on the instability, contradiction, or even the irrationality of the ordinary” (AITER, 1989), this familiar is not from the level of the acceptable, and rather it is from the level of those who are unacceptable and rejected. However, it is familiar and present and a reality, no matter how others deny it, embodying the moral fallout that is mainly related to the mockery and laughter that has a relationship with the collapsed values in society on the one hand, and the sacred values that the community surrounds with reverence and respect on the other hand. “(Zakaria, 2004) Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi has tried to delude everyone that he is writing his satirical literature devoted to pure humor, which “plays the role of a satirical philosopher who casts great things in the spirit of humor and belittling or in the spirit of understatement and indifference” (Ibid, p. 154), however, it was intended to create the impression of anger and rejection of this reality, and he built this impression from the fact that humor and sarcasm together "combine elements that are far apart in reality or mix between different inherently different facts." (Ibid, p. 154).
It is noteworthy to look at Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi’s satirical writings that often favored fantasy in drawing their worlds, and they are the ones who can conceal themselves in worlds full of taboo laws, censorship and terror of pressure forces, fantasia is an appropriate tool to freely openly reveal persons, interests and emotions within societies governed by strict customary and social controls (AITER, 1989) as it is an opportunity to escape from the constraints of reality and its cruelty.
But the goal and purpose of escaping ranges between achieving wishes fulfillment, excitement, and mere enjoyment. ” (Ibid: p. 12) It is a means “to get rid of perceptions and usual concepts, but the purpose behind this escape is to show the distress, suppressing breaths, and the horror that characterizes our human world. ” (Ibid, p. 20).
Likewise, fantasy has the ability to penetrate the structures and discourses that dominate social consciousness (Fadel, 1993), while maintaining a safe distance with these structures after penetrating them without directly confronting them, including the danger to the creator himself, as he evokes the worlds of what he passes through quickly, and he means a world else. (Awni Subhi, 1998) Ahmad Hasan Al-Zu’bi presented the fantasy of the strange with a distinct narrative intelligence, starting from that the strange is achieved if the reader decides that the natural laws of reality remain sound and allow the interpretation of the phenomena described. (Ibid: p. 49).
We can believe that Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi set out to ridicule to be his tool for writing, expression, protest, revolution, objection, demeaning and humiliating the other, based on what he launched from the Jordanian, Arab and international contemporary writers who all meet on the main points that unite them in their creative gender, which is that they all wanted this literature, to declare their rejection of reality, to record their protest against it, and to challenge injustice, alienation, oppression and humiliation, and to mock those who made this reality, and even seek to humiliate and demean it and expose its meanings through laughter that rejects humiliation, alienation, sadness, despair and surrender. Satirical literature presents itself as a combination of humor, irony and ambiguity (Muhammad, 2012), it is a way to express crooked behavior and mistakes in a way that a wise artist chooses to turn with his hands into a deadly weapon (Numan, 1979), as it is “mockery of something that does not conform to mental conviction, nor is it consistent with the regular concepts in the custom of the individual and the group, it is a transcendent attitude, contemptuous of what is anomaly , a stranger disconnected from the ordinary ”( Suzan, 1994), and it is“ a way of speaking by which the writer expresses the opposite of what he actually intended ”( Jabbour, 1979), as it strikes deep in the culture of the peoples who knew the laughing and satirical images of ancient times (Numan, 1979), in addition to the fact that the peoples all have known one form or another of irony. (Ibid: p. 53).
Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi does not fail to employ the irony in drawing his mockery of the cowardly hypocrites in Jordanian society, who reach the cowardice and hypocrisy to the extent that they send a blessing message to their corrupt manager who bought a chair for 1500 dinars to sit on, while they from many years did not have a chair to sit on, what would be among them is to be led after social hypocrisy, and then they bless the president who dispossessed them on the chair that he bought, while their condition continues to stand and connected humiliation, and Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi relays their story, saying: “Here the first colleague interrupted him, and said: Moment. What is a chair? Here it is useful to mock the purchase decision … I prefer you to ask him: You see what it is made of …"The precious one until deserves this chair? For what is useful for exaltation and reverence, and this is abundant and desirable these days, the second shook his head in agreement, then proceeded to close the text according to administrative rules … We hope for more virility, elevation and ruggedness as well." (Ahmad, 1995).
Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi built this satirical tale on a clear paradox. The oppressed citizen, who is deprived, instead of rebelling against his manager, and asking him for a chair to sit on, congratulates him on the chair that he paid a large sum for, and thus contributes to his own embezzlement as well as his manager's dispossession of him on the grounds that the paradox always says something, and intends to reverse it, and embody the contradiction between appearance and the reality of the situation, it is basically based on the discrepancy between reality and appearance. (Abdul Wahid, 1993)
From this point of view, the story that Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi reported in “Al-Kursi" pictured alienation, surrender, hypocrisy and cowardice, while it suggests what it wants, and the reader has to pick up what he wants from these suggestions.
First: The social image of Jordanian society according to Ahmad Hassan Al-Zu’bi in his satirical writings
The positive images of the Jordanian society in its social aspect do not appear in Al-Zu'bi's satirical writings. Because he is not concerned with the statistical, descriptive, analytical, didactic, or even historical sociological study of society, rather, presents his position on the faults, errors, flaws and corruption, and he works on documenting and criticizing it with a bitter and painful criticism that is hidden behind the irony which is part of him, and does not part of it. We can summarize the most important social issues that Al-Zu’bi stopped with his mockery, indignation and dissatisfaction in
Names of Jordanians
Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi makes big projections on the names of Jordanian citizens, and bitterly suggests that their names be chosen according to their suffering. Therefore, people have to postpone naming their children until they grow up, and know their destinies, and choose names according to them: “If parents give us numbers instead of names until the age of maturity or retirement age, then we will choose what suits our stature, pockets, happiness and age correspondence.” (Ahmad, 2008).
In another situation, Al-Zu'bi picks up an apparent contrast between the names of Jordanian citizens, and between their destinies, their circumstances and the reality of their livelihood. He has a puncture in his car's tires in every trip to and out of Amman, when he goes, he is caught by the radar, on the return also , caught by the radar, and every week he visits a garage or a court, he has no luck at all, and with all this his name is Muwafaq "Successful". (Ibid: p.10)
It is clearly evident that Al-Zu’bi wanted to capture with this the paradox between the name and the reality of the life of that Jordanian citizen who works as a taxi driver, thus representing the oppression, dispossession and daily suffering of the Jordanian that extends to the smallest details of his day.
General social conditions
The social image of Jordanian society appears according to Al-Zu'bi in his writings with the title of the work, as these titles form thresholds for this image, and they relate to the formal, written and physical form of the book before entering the text, it includes the title, introduction, cover picture, background, fonts, writing method, type of script, and everything related to this structure (Jamil, 1997), and they all play the role of revealing the identity of the writer and the book and their goals, as it is a material to tempt the recipient to read, and push him to read and discover in the worlds of the written material.
Al-Zu’bi carefully selected the titles of his satirical writings, based on the saying that the title is the first threshold of the text that stems from the vision the work carries for the world (Ibid, p. 100). Therefore, he chose - by way of mentioning but not limited to - "Swalif" as a title for one of his satirical works, to suggest that what was mentioned in it is nothing but stories for the sake of entertainment and killing of time, but this title contains a lot of deceptive delusion, as in fact the case presenting what is the opposite, he puts a "hand on the wounds" of the human being and the entire nation, as well as the title of his satirical book “Man Saf Balade” refers directly to the act of insatiable and exploitation practiced by the Jordanian official in his exploitative behavior of his country, which is a rejected and reprehensible behavior by Al-Zu'bi, announces this position since the title his satirical work.
Likewise, the title of his book, “Al-Mamoot”, explicitly refers to the situation of the Jordanian citizen, who becomes like a bird whose feathers have been uprooted and unable to fly, which is a representation of the alienated state among governments that trampled on it, hunger him, and exploited him to became “Mamoot”, and this is a common characterization among Jordanians to describe the state of poverty, deprivation, destitution, and narrow-mindedness.
Likewise, the title of the book "The Pains of a Nation" is a clever semantic manipulation of the word "pains" that can consist of (or) that expresses the sound of pain, just as the word "hunger" alone denotes the state of deprivation, helplessness and want that the Jordanian citizen experiences under the forces of captivity overwhelming him.
In general, the titles used by Al-Zu’bi were a tempting threshold for the reader to draw his attention, provoke him to work, and alert him from the beginning to his goal of these writings.
Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi mocks all the conditions of Jordanian citizens, whom he sees as stumbling in a harsh social life based on injustice, racial discrimination, utilitarianism, paralysis, favoritism and mediocrity, he summarizes this dire and sad state of affairs in a famous Jordanian word, which is the word "dahl" that Jordanians use to describe their conditions that do not satisfy them, and it proceeds according to what they do not desire. (Ahmad, 2008).
The funny thing is that he sees in this word a unification of Jordanians in their answers, complaints, food, hours of sleep, sounds of waking up, queues and saucers (Ibid: p. 25),
It is a monotheism that carries the misery, oppression, deprivation, pain, and troubled conditions it carries, therefore, he makes from it a mocking, comprehensive description of the state of suffering that the Jordanians are experiencing, while they are slipping from a situation to a worse state: “Dahl' usually refers to a descent into a decline, or a return to a back, so that we cannot slide something towards the upside ... So all the“ Al Dahleen” are in a declining position, and in a "neutral" position, hoping from this long-term "stage" that a "stalk" or "interlock" will occur in which they return to the lost operation. (Ibid, p. 26)
On the other hand, Al-Zu’bi raises the issue of excessive childbearing in Jordan, which causes social problems that are not hidden from anyone, real solutions or corrective proposals to this social problem that complicates the system of living, spending and development in Jordan. Al-Zu’bi says: “The citizen needs other means of entertainment other than “having babies” and “playing cards” remains the only means that will make him spend his night “fill his gloom” instead of thinking about reproduction. “(Ibid: p. 110) In this irony, he hints that this phenomenon in Jordan / childbearing in abundance is one of the Jordanian expressions of his defeats, losses in life, humanity, intellectual and existential.
In another article, he mocks the transportation situation in Jordan, hinting at its deteriorating conditions, especially with regard to driving etiquette and the regularity of its conditions. He describes the state of transportation in Jordan with the disasters and accidents it carries, saying: “The transportation user in our country must have specifications superior to any other user in the world, such as culture, patience, agility and the skill of vaulting, and enduring pain on the Sufi way, and after a period of using the buses, the "rider" will be surprised by his ability to insert the shuttlecock into the loin and insert the “transmission stick” into the thigh bone. (Ibid: p. 71), Also, Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi does not fail to mock any social rituals that perpetuate the concepts of alienation, injustice and oppression. He presents a sarcastic example of that through school trips for children in which he sees many compulsive behaviors that suppress, humiliate, and grieve the student, instead of making him happy and entertaining him. Therefore, it refers to devastation and sadness. ”At the end of the trip, the driver buys a necklace of yellow roses, which he hangs on the front of the bus, we return with the sunset, exhausted, frustrated, and hungry, when parents asked us, "How is this trip?" We answered with a voice that resembles whining: "extraordinary?" (Ibid: p. 12).
This is after Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi reviews the stages and stations for humiliating the student in this deplorable journey, which are not very different from what the Jordanian citizen endures in his Jordanian homeland, and these stages begin with teachers forcing students to go to the trip "and this threat is what sows fear in our minds, and linking the idea of the trip with fear of warnings "( Ibid: p.11), passing through the text of approval of the trip, which must be coercive according to one text approved by the school, and distributed to parents to sign it, relinquishing any of their rights and the rights of their children in the event of any unfortunate accident of the trip and the students who are deported innocent,
He is: “I am the parent of the student so-and-so. I have no objection to my son going on the school trip, and everything that happens to him is a destiny and meant to be” (Ibid: p.11), down to various compelling details, such as: trip partners, choosing places and hiking routes, and imposing specific music on students, and forcing them to submit to the desires of the driver and teachers supervising the trip.
After these compelling details, it is natural for the result that Jordanian students hate school trips, just as Ahmad Hasan Al-Zu’bi himself hated it, who says when talking about trips: “I naturally hate trips, and I hate the idea of recreation, and I resent when someone suggests the need to change the atmosphere.” (Ibid: p.11).
Clan domination over Jordanian society
The tribal organization dominates Jordanian society in its full details, from the smallest social formations to forming the government hierarchy, through providing society with its individuals, classes and classes (Ali Muhafazah, 2006).
It is an organization that has many disadvantages on society and social justice, with regard to the disturbance of security, the dispossession of the citizen, and the loss of social rights for many parties in favor of the clan and those who benefit from it, and this situation arouses the resentment of many thinkers, innovators and reformers, as well as the displeasure of Al-Zu'bi who sees this system as a reason, in the reluctance of the Jordanian citizen who belongs to a clan to fulfill his duties and commits many transgressions due to his protection with his clan, in the face of the model of productive individualism that the western world embraces, and explains the success of societies and the distinction of its members, and explains their commitment to work, patriotism and the law, which makes their loyalty to society based on work sincerity, order and commitment to the spirit of law, far from the absurdities of tribal affiliations that devote support to their members in their conditions and behaviors all, even if that is at the expense of law, truth and fairness: “The Japanese clan is the establishment of work, and there is no income for lineage or blood in it, neither from afar nor from near, The Japanese remain without a clan until he joins work in one of the economic establishments, there he will serve there throughout his life and when he reached retirement and his productivity has declined, they are never indispensable to him, the establishment is obligated to find him a job that suites him, within its walls, and if he is completely incapacitated, it continues to provide him with assistance until he passed away, so it is not surprising that you ask a Japanese for example his name and replies: "Toyota Kinotomi," or "Jumaha Suzuki," or "Muhammad Ali Mitsubishi." (Ahmad, 2008).
This text, in its naïve external level, appears to be a laughing text, but it is a text that exalts the values of productive individualism, and makes fun of exploitative, dependent tribalism that produces only passive individuals who do not know the meaning of love and service of homelands away from exploitation and alienation.
Social customs and traditions
Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi is free from the restrictions of many Jordanian social customs and traditions, and he does not find himself unable to criticize them with all force and frankness. The backward, backward, murderous habit that impoverishes, kills, and disrupts the bonds of Jordanian society without the need for all of that. He says:
“Until we became the owners of methods and creativity in "impoverishing" ourselves, emptying our joys from their beauty and simplicity, for we are the ones who dig trenches of despair with his own hands, and we ourselves are the ones who are deepening the pockets of poverty and the "damned circumstances". (Ibid, p. 79)
He also mocks the habit of group family trips in Jordan, in which he sees it as a consecration of distress and isolation, instead of being the embodiment of the collective family spirit that shares trips to be happy with them and to please themselves and their members, and about a huge tree in which the family escapes, and the women hide in it, we are looking for a place in which there are no scorpions in consideration of the young, and there are no bullies in respect of the harem, and no nakedness in it in consideration of the elderly, a place with dense grass to relieve themselves, we are looking for two rooms, a salon and a carpet of from the grass to be able to grill, we return shortly before afternoon to our homes that we took with us, half of the children are asleep, the other half are hungry, and the hikers' eyebrows bounce. (Ibid, p. 54)
Second: The political picture of Jordanian society according to Ahmad Hassan Al-Zu’bi in his satirical writings:
We go back, and we repeat that the pictures according to Al-Zu’bi - just like the satirical writers in Jordan - overlap with each other, and in many cases one picture becomes a mixture of all the pictures the subject of this study. This is because the societal image in itself is intertwined strings in a single fabric that make up the entire Jordanian society. However, we can clearly see the bias of Al-Zu’bi towards political criticism in his writings, it is a matter that explains many other images and phenomena, especially social and intellectual phenomena.
The political images in these writings of explain many matters in Jordanian society. Therefore, he writes in with all insistence, bitterness and irony, and puts his finger on the ache and the wound over and over.
The political issue seems clear to Al-Zu'bi and clear, but he uses camouflage, evasion and mystery when entering it because of the caveats and dangers involved. That is why he borrows the anonymous word (the thing) in order to describe the political situation, and to embody his psychological, intellectual and emotional position from his political reality that he lives in with its stifling details, and he introduces the reader to the word (the thing) saying: “The term“ the thing ”is used in politics as well. Example: In a session, and in the presence of a suspicious person trying to pick up whisper vibrations among the speakers, one of the attendees asks his friend: who can you feel "the thing"? The other replies: “I can’t determine yet if he is good or bad?” "The thing" here could be anything: a policy, a well-known institution, or even a stalking person. (Ibid, p. 30)
It is clear that Al-Zu’bi is hiding behind the word (the thing) in order to escape from any political bitch that he may face because of his opinions and records in his writings, he admits that he uses this word to enter the game of evasion, indictment and condemnation while he is safe from legal or political accountability, so he says about that: "It could be here": Al-Islah, Al-Jazeera, watermelon or “Haifa Wehbe”. Frankly, in the two political best terms to talk about without censorship or variation are: "the thing" and "position". (Ibid: p. 31)
The Arab political reality
The entire Arab political reality is mocked by Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi, and the most ridiculous thing is to strip the Arab human being of his value, will and ability to change, and to dispossess it to the point of diminishing that makes a number that has no real value. As every Arab indulges in the parts of the Arab world without exception, and in that he says: "By the way, there are 300 million Arabs" who are just like me, "they have mouths to eat, and they have no mouths to speak." (Ibid: p. 56)
When it comes to Arab political issues such as the Arab Summit, Al-Zu’bi offers his advice with irony and recklessness from Arab politicians based on the murderous Arab political life and his long personal experience in this matter, so he advises them, saying: “In the next Arab summit, to the Arab countries that are do not want to be a "bump" to search for "Faryal", the daughter of America's aunt who is married with the cousin of the cousin of the cousin of “Qahtan”, and be kind to him in order to would be enough. " (Ibid, p. 62)
This sarcastic advice that has no political value is based on his personal experience in his childhood, where he was facing alienation, contempt, terror and beating from the strongest student in his class, and when he did not find any way to escape from this strong and unjust student who beat him without being rescued for, he ends with a social method that is extremely absurd, but deeply rooted in the Jordanian social fabric, which is the necessity of searching for relations of kinship or lineage in order for the citizen to survive or take something from his right in a tribal society that only recognizes clan relations, therefore, he claims that there is an alleged relationship of kinship that binds him to that strong student in order not to hit or insult him, and is satisfied that he takes his money from him completely by force, concealed behind the relationship, and on this basis he advises Arab politicians at their summit to find a relationship of kinship with the American political scene, perhaps this strong , brutal regime, stops hitting them and stealing from them: Isn't your cousin Feryal married to my paternal cousin in law? He replied: "yes... Then I say to him: "Take my money then as a respect of our relatives’ relationship." (Ibid: p.62).
Al-Zu’bi also mocks the mentality of Arab militants, which portrays them that the oppressive ruling Arab leaderships may eject them from their coercive detention camps, without realizing that they are victims of major opportunistic exploitative plots plotted by Arab leaders and party blocs for their personal benefits, while they believed in these leaders and they are waiting to be rescued from their detention centers after long and fraudulent negotiations, without knowing that they do not care about them, it is mired in extravagance, sugar, pleasure and material self-gain. “Today is the day of the Palestinian prisoner, and a few days ago it was the Day of the Palestinian Child, preceded by the Day of Earth, many feasts and little joy, on a bed above me: “They will not leave us like this, I am sure, the negotiations are at their most intense as I hear, it is said that they spend long hours at the negotiating table with the enemy, with their hands a thorn and a knife, and in front of them are Molotov cocktails, they are also fighting, with beautiful patience, because the group will never leave us, we're their winning card. '' (Ahmad, 1964)
Relationship with the government
Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi embodies the bad relationship that binds the Jordanian citizen with his government, which misleads him in most circumstances, therefore, he warns against the consequences of that, and afraid of approaching the Jordanian citizen's food, and he sees in that destruction and devastation awaiting everyone, and predicts an imminent revolution against these miserable conditions that the Jordanian citizen is living through, and it fights him even in his livelihood. Tomato, our last vaccination of contentment with livelihood, the soothing capsule for the pains of poverty, the antibiotic for hunger, and the last bulwark of the "satyr", which is the strawberry leaf that hides the nakedness of "need", and it is the "steadfastness button, so do touch it and then regret, for it has the color of blood." (Ahmad, 2008)
Parliamentary elections in Jordan are receiving a large share of the mockery of Al-Zu'bi's, because it is based - mostly - on lies, empty and subjective slogans, tribal fears, narrow affiliations and personal interests, and it does not start from an intellectual ground based on free and conscious action that chooses a parliamentarian to represent the people on the basis of competence, merit, ability, honesty, sincerity, and patriotism that are known for work, not false slogans.
This frustrating parliamentary scene is summarized by Al-Zu’bi in the candidates whose effective tool and their electoral program is based on distributing "kunafa" sweets to a people who are short-conscious who find in "kunafa" a justification for electing someone to sit on a parliamentary chair, and in this, Al-Zu’bi says, "The most convincing thing is the kunafa ”( - Ibid, p. 34), and with this flimsy, deficient persuasive power, the Jordanian citizen falls into the crime of choosing opportunistic individuals who cannot be a successful choice in place of the real and conscious elites who are able to work and accomplish.
Digging deep in mockery, Al-Zu’bi mocking the Jordanian electoral scene, as he is projecting the Jordanian elections on the American elections in a fantastic fantasy painting that reflects the mockery of the Jordanian reality. We project it to a completely different scene, which is the American electoral scene in which there is an acceptable amount of freedom, honesty and choice of competencies.
Al-Zu’bi wanted to infuse his sarcasm with exotic fantasy in order to make it penetrate the determinants of time and space in the natural scales that humans know in their lives on the planet (Shuaib, 1997). Such as feeling fear (Tzfitan, 1994), just as fantasia uses repercussions closer to moods, the strangeness of which may at first appear inconsistent, so either it is suggestively rigid or it sends fickle and boundless strings of it. '' (Shuaib, 1997)
Fantasia is able to “fall into the limits of imagination and fantasies that are sometimes blurred by the fabric of reality” (Edward, 1990), starting from the hypothesis that does not see a wide difference between truth and fiction in literature, but rather believes that this observed truth is made up of fragments and breaks this world we live in ”(Salah, 1996). Fantasia does not contradict the real, but gives it symbolic and semantic values.
It seems that Al-Zu’bi has chosen the fantasy body in his satirical writings to express the contradictions and conflicts in his world that man cannot resolve in his favor, so he proceeds to shift his expression about that to imaginary worlds capable of giving way to him for contemplation (Nabila, 1992), and this is all an attempt to emanating from "a deep despair about being aware of the essence of reality, and familiarity with the sad psychological transformations that man is going through." (Hussein, 2003)
The mockery of the Jordanian electoral scene presented by Al-Zu’bi regarding the Jordanian elections was manifested in the Jordanian elections being dropped on the American elections in a fanciful and ironic manner that we perceive in every part of the narrative plate that he drew about these elections, and made its details as follows: “On the eve of the elections, it comes out, all the "pick-ups" and the tractors in one celebrating line, passing through the Republican tent, and there are teenagers riding on them shouting " Kerry...Kerry" While the Bush family's teenagers are chasing them with stones and corn butts, then the elder Bush intervenes, asking them not to slip into a tribal brow that might affect his son, George W., ordering them to bring the Nabulsi kunafa and distribute it to the audience. (Ahmad, 2008).
Third: The intellectual and artistic image of Jordanian society according to Ahmad Hassan Al-Zu’bi in his satirical writings
Technical TV programs
Al-Zu’bi is an artist at the creative level of writing, and he uses this talent to portray the intellectual and artistic scene in Jordan and the Arab world, and criticizes it with all courage and cynicism. He stops at a lot of decay in this scene, and refutes it part by part with biting irony, and begins with mockery of the TV program the famous artist "Star Academy" who sees him as an artistic, intellectual, moral and aesthetic failure, and talks about him, saying: "I missed the" Star Academy "train this year, although I was excited to participate in it since last year, when I saw that the sweet " Shorabah " there in the academy, and I continued all the exotic stories (Ibid, p. 57)… “Once again they are lucky, if I were among them, and the committee lost their minds and chose me from among the“ winners ”, then the“ cunning ”mind would appear, and I will show you what I will do with Ahmad Al-Kuwaiti "the bleeder. " (Ibid, p. 59)
Al-Zu’bi constantly mocks the state of intellectual subordination and voluntary alienation experienced by the citizen in Jordanian society, stripping him of any will or ability to refuse or adopt any position that differs from the positions of the authoritarian authority, which is a situation rampant among citizens from the lowest status and influence in society to the most senior social and leadership places and sites, and in that he says: “if he entered, sat, turned, smiled, coughed, sneezed, rose up, upset, insisted, bowed, cursed, vowed, assured, denounced, promised, slept, walked, ran they follow him exactly ... and at the end of the day they rubbed their hands remorseful in front of the leader: We ask you, while you are in you might and strength, does not disagreement spoil a cause? (Awja'a Watan, p.53)
In everything Al-Zu’bi writes about intellectual awareness in the Jordanian scene, he insists on a major idea, which is that societal consciousness in Jordan is always met with a state of oppression and oppression that shackles the Jordanian citizen, and that penetrates into the depths of himself, his memory and his conscience, and is reflected in the smallest details of his life, the so-called joys, happiness and try to connect to forms of oppression, for example: a classroom trip for children and boys should be a cause for joy, comfort and well-being, but it turns into a harsh and painful memory, because it is linked to endless details of oppression and psychological and physical terror, starting with the class teacher ending with all the details: “The class teacher would threaten everyone who abstains from the trip or creates an excuse not to go, and this threat is what sowed fear in our minds, and linked the idea of the trip with fear of the threat. ". (Swalif, P.11)
Fourth: The religious picture of the Jordanian society according to Ahmad Hassan Al-Zu’bi in his satirical writings
Al-Zu’bi is fully aware, as a cultured, civilized Muslim that all religious rituals of Islam have a deep spiritual dimension, and when any Islamic ritual is emptied of its spiritual dimension, it becomes a repetitive and habitual behavior in society that has no value. Therefore, those who perform the Islamic rituals emptied of their spirituality, and they care about the external social crusts, and forget the deep significance and purpose of it, and the Hajj is one of those sacred rituals that the social behavior of many pilgrims hijacked from its deep spiritual thought, and in that he says, commenting on this situation “after the return and after distributing gifts in small bags, and arranging "tiger skin" blankets in the cupboards, the tired pilgrims begin to complain about the distance of the housing from the sanctuary, the overcrowding in rooms and the loud snoring, and the pilgrims "shrieked and snapped", indicating that they did not get one "Revanin" tablet from the mission medical staff, and that the evaluator left them, and lived far away, and that the qualified guides were knotted during the circumambulation, and if one of the sons asked them about their standing in Arafat, the father says: "Which mountain? We haven't seen a mountain. They took us alone to a mountain (empty), so the rectified - may God reward him with goodness - said: anything goes! (Ibid, p. 40)
Fifthly: The economic picture of Jordanian society according to Ahmad Hassan Al-Zu’bi in his satirical writings
Al-Zu’bi repeatedly insists on the issue of poverty that haunts him, and it is a pervasive problem in the Jordanian society that, day after day, is plunging into more poverty, need and oppression, therefore, he confronts this dangerous societal phenomenon over and over without getting tired of writing about this matter. He talks about the pain of this phenomenon, condemns those who make this poverty, and insists on starving the people. He says: “We laugh despite hunger", and we see him mocking his poverty, saying: “Ahmed Al-Hassan Al-Zu’bi owns 22 million" bad lucks" ”in his forehead (Ibid, p. 105), and in another place he says:“ Two months ago, I have included in my personal budget an item to buy “trousers” and a striped shirt similar to the Lebanese MP, “Marwan Hamadeh,” and present it to the family council as an urgent approval, then surprised by transferring it to the legal committee, to be discussed extensively, then voted on, and then surprised by its rejection. (Ibid, p. 16)
When Al-Zu’bi describes the economic situation of the Jordanian, he describes it with the expression "Jift", which he means "Zeft", to indicate by this that the two words refer to one description, which is a situation of economic deterioration, distress and great hardship that besieges the Jordanians in most of its segments, and crushes them. This is exactly what happened to me when I saw one of the "old dead broke" bargaining for the purchase of a heater that works on "olives wood", so I spontaneously told him and without intending to: “your condition is (Jift)." (Ibid, p. 15)
Al-Zu’bi insists on irony when describing the Jordanian economic situation, linking oil derivatives with the happiness of the Jordanian citizen, "describing our psychological balance, our financial condition, our personal behavior, our surprise, and the extent of our happiness or unhappiness." (Ibid, p. 105)
Elsewhere, he talks about the financial distress experienced by the Jordanian in light of the high prices of energy sources, so he is forced to use dried olive as a source of heating, and he describes his whole condition with the word "Jift", indicating that his condition has reached its worst stages that can be summarized in the famous Jordanian word " Zeft ", and he tells all of this in a story in which he says:“ A friend told me that the first of these terms began to appear after his son asked him: " God willing, you passed the test.” The boy replied, “No, I "Jfatit”." this word comes, as an alternative to the word Zfatit." (Ibid: p.16)
According to Al-Zu’bi “Al-Raghaif” bread" is the symbol of the Jordanian poverty, as well as his suffering, especially in a circumstance that this loaf has become a dream far away on the shoulders of the poor Jordanian. Many Jordanians cannot obtain it in the crushing poor life of the poor and the less fortunate in society. Therefore, Al-Zu’bi portrays this extreme poverty in a sarcastic way that represents the pain and deprivation experienced by the Jordanian citizen, who is unable to provide for his minimum daily needs represented in a loaf that he eats in light of being deprived of the rest of his other basic needs. The bakeries have fronts, the barefoot corps advancing supported by the air cover, and the archers are entrenched behind the sacks of flour, and in the trenches of hunger awaiting crossing. Finally, the bread mattress has become a coffin, the morsel is a bullet, and the fight is alive, the bread is bitter, and the homeland is starving. (Awja'a Watan, p. 37)
This tragic scene that shocks the recipient is walking towards another tragic scene steeped in painful cynicism, whoever can get a loaf without paying his life for it, will return to his home happy amid the joy of people with this simple achievement that has become great and rare due to poverty and want, the neighborhood accepts congratulations, hangs for them the decoration of the door of the house, and distributes drinks for their joy in their lives, and floats over their heads the incense burners, and folk bands play for them, attend the funerals, and a wide blessing takes place in the neighborhood café, and Farid al-Atrash( singer) shouts from an old recorder on a high window. (Ibid, p. 38)
Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi criticizes the unemployment that the Jordanian suffers from, as well as the methods of obtaining a job in Jordanian society. In most cases, it is not possible to obtain a job in Jordan except through the logic of the intermediaries and the personal relationships that employ the unworthy for the job, while searching for creative people and real competencies. The job seeker has only to look for an intermediary in order to find a job that will secure him a decent living: “From this, I learned that he who wants to reach must have a means of transport. (Swalif, P.20)
Here, Al-Zu’bi cries out in our consciences silenced by silence and disappointment in a society that exalts the values of personal interests and degrades the value of honorable competition. (Ibid: p. 20)
The deteriorating economic reality
Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi’s vision of the Jordanian economic reality stems mainly from the great crises he is going through, and this situation prompts him to declare his lack of confidence in the Jordanian economists who find them incapable of providing any real and sincere solutions to the Jordanian economy, and develops solutions for it instead of them, which are ironic solutions to the extent, representing the pain experienced by the Jordanian, especially as the performance of Jordanian economists is weak and unsatisfactory.
The solution proposed by Al-Zu’bi is a solution that is like a popular recipe that cannot cure the ailing Jordanian economy, but it represents his mockery of this deteriorating situation that puts everyone in a stifling economic impasse. “Our country's economy no longer trusts the economists and experts who are coming and traveling, as medicine have failed, as it is said, nothing brings him back its vitality and youth as it was except traditional medicine. Our economy has only used two spoons of "vegetable margarine" and two spoons of honey, and grinds them with three "cashews" and mixes them with Qizzha "black seed", "they become like molasses," sallow it in the morning …and pray to god!. (Ibid: p.52).
Al-Zu’bi depicts the deteriorating economic reality that the Jordanian lives, and suffers from its effects on various aspects of his life, adding to the difficulty and complexity, and dreams of any glimmer of hope that might save him from this narrow reality besieging him, and dreams that any natural wealth will appear in Jordan, just like any Jordanian dreams this is in order to improve the economic living conditions of Jordanians.
One of the economic dreams of Al-Zu’bi and among Jordanians is the discovery of oil, and he is rushing this discovery, and he even wants to do it personally. “Tomorrow specifically I will carry my moss and my shovel, and go to the oil quarries, and I will dig for what I live, either to grave my poverty, or to bury my dream, but I will never come back with either of them alone! Say, “Oh God!” (Ibid, p. 18).
This insistence on extracting petroleum in Jordan reflects the desire and dreams of Jordanians to achieve economic prosperity in any way, and rapid and sudden enrichment similar to Gulf oil enrichment, which are dreams that stem from poverty, want, oppression, and naivety of dreams, and have nothing to do with national awareness in any way, and the comprehensive national civilization plan, the Jordanian’s crisis, need and deprivation are what explain his dreams and desires, so Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi dreams of that represent his deferred wishes, just as the dreams of the entire Jordanian people who suffer from deprivation and need, so his dream is according to the following: “I have delayed dreams that I inherited from the fifth grandmother, along with the land gouache ... Dreams that I will take out to bask in the end of my life. I will buy Sarah James, and a dozen "Thobs" ... and I will have a dozen children ... and I will be the first singer of the milk, rice, toothpaste, pampers and Chevrolet cars commercials. “(Ibid: p.16)
There is no doubt that these dreams that Al-Zu’bi narrates in his text represent the deprivation of the Jordanian on the one hand, as well as a form of consumer depression that the Arab consumer reality is experiencing that is indulged in random, instinctive spending that is recklessly away from long-term civilized development plans, so Al-Zu'bi was part of this oil-economic reality, which built his happiness and well-being at the expense of the Arab reality tormented by its poverty and deprivation.
Al-Zu’bi pays tribute to the Jordanian and Arab economic reality. He draws up dreams and completely ironic plans of this reality, this confusion, and this randomness, and summarizes his economic plan according to the following: “If the story of oil rocks comes with us, we will change the laws of production, sale and export in the world, we will not build oil refineries, we will not buy barges or tankers, and we will not extend the pipelines, rather, we will build oil mills as an alternative to oil refineries as long as our oil is hidden in its crusts, and there will be a gutter that gives virgin oil out. " (Ibid, p. 18)
The cynical pen of Al-Zu'bi reaches the stalled economic projects that occupy the minds of Jordanians, while they witness their failure and stumbling, such as the (Dissi water) project, which is stalled due to the search for a strategic partner, as the government claims, which stops the project in the midst of long, complex and unclear discussions, so Al-Zu’bi interferes in this situation, and expresses his mockery of this important economic project that has stalled due to the government's failure and inefficiency. “I still feel speechless every time I read news about referring the project’s bid to a new party, or establishing a national police, while the symptoms of“ icterus ”appeared to fulfill our dream and our vision, and did not fulfill promise, all I fear is that I will be hit by “blindness” and before seeing “ Al-Disi water.” (Ibid, p. 73)
Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi puts a cynical solution to the Al-Disi problem. He writes a letter to the Jordanian officials, proposing to drag Amman to the Disi area as long as the issue of drawing the Disi water to Amman has completely faltered, which is an impossible and absurd solution that represents the mockery of Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi and the mockery of the Jordanian people distressed by this miserable situation, as he says in his letter: The decision-makers, a good greeting, before we are more thirsty, and our tongues turn into bells, and before we are forced to perform ablution with "Pepsi", you have only one year in front of you. Either you draw Disi water to Amman, or you drag Amman to Disi . “(Ibid: p. 74)
The form of irony for Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi in his portrayal of Jordanian society
Al-Zu’bi did not present a random experiment with irony in his writings, rather it was a clear and organized experiment committed to many data that made it an experiment that goes beyond the usual to make sadness, anger and rejection a tool for vision and expression, especially since "sarcastic speech is a speech of multiple connotations, which takes away, towards capturing anomalies, portraying the marginal, and the different layers of society. '' (Suleiman, 2015).
Sarcasm before it wears literature, and takes shape in its form, is in fact “a psychological emotion that is formed in a person’s consciousness, and a heart state that shows the feelings of the emotionally charged, and crystallizes in the form of movements in his face or his body, or words and sentences embodied on his tongue.” (Henry, 1964).
From this point of view, Al-Zu’bi chose to present his sarcasm through the marginal person who lives the tragedy of reality, with all its manifestations, this is why we see in his writings marginal daily figures who suffer from the harshness of life upon them, and live the bitter details of that, and the literary satirist, Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi, is assigned the task of drawing the image of the society in which you live and suffers from its details, so the marginal people (Tawfiq, 2008) play the starring role in drawing societal suffering experienced by the marginal human being on more than one level, sarcasm “gives the satirist the status of the official spokesperson for society, and gives him the green light to open his arrows in criticizing those who are inclined to the street, since we can say that mockery is the best mirror on which the conditions of society and the conditions of reality are reflected” (Zakaria, 1998), and satire presents a kind of negative revolution that does not it can confront directly, so it turns around the situation, and presents its rejecting stance in its less daring way than direct confrontation. (Maryam, 2006).
He presented his sarcasm in a very simple fluent language, close to the reach of the public before the private, the public is the target of his writings, so he built his language on their level, and took away their expressions and words to express his mockery. His texts were filled with vernacular words in the Jordanian colloquial, such as: the word "Dahl" that Jordanians use to describe their conditions that do not satisfy them, and proceed according to what they do not desire (Swalif, P.25), the word "Yebnshar", meaning that pierces the frame of the car (Ibid: p.10), and the word "Swalif", just words, and the word “Tuffa” means not working, the word “Tasheqah” means motivating the car to work (Ibid: p. 26), the word “Kifiyya” meaning acceptable and satisfactory (Ibid, p. 12), and the word “Laenat Al-Harsi” meaning bad, not good and exhausting (Ibid, p. 30), and the word "Shloun" meaning "how" (Ibid, p. 30), the word“ Mqabah ”which means bad conditions (Ibid: p.62), the word“ Matabeh ”which means weak that everyone hits him (Ibid: p.62), the word“ L' Stereh ”which means covering (Ibid: p.64), and the word“ Fanelathum” which means their underwear, the word “Ingardat” means bad or sinister behavior (ibid: p. 34), or the word “AzZenekh” which means bleeder (Ibid: p. 59), the word “Husha” which means fight (Ibid: p. 59), and the word “Qashal” meaning nothing (Ibid, p. 40) and the word "Tafran", meaning he has no money. (Ibid: p.16)
We can say that the structure for cynicism in his is the mixture of the Arabic language inlaid with colloquial or vernacular among Jordanians, as well as it has its own pickings that start from the idea to become a thought, then after that it becomes an independent article that contains a mixture of all of that in a special mixture that forms a special imprint of Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi’s writings. So that it is easy for everyone who reads a text for him to know that it is written with his own pen.
Also, the narrative character prevails over many of his satirical writings, as he makes his marginal characters heroes who live daily harsh details, and go through the crises in which they are attached, then lead to more sadness and suffering, while the story monitors these small daily details; Satire "is considered one of the realistic arts that do not know about impartiality and do not live in ivory towers." (Ibid: p.16)
In this story structure, the Jordanian character appears in the time of events in Jordanian history and reality, and in the details of the Jordanian place, and the event is formed from the suffering of this person, and from the details he spoke with, and sometimes the hero is the narrator himself and the book itself, so Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi narrates events related to him, but they are describes the conditions of other Jordanians, as he hates trips, because it does not carry the hoped-for joy, and he declares that, "I naturally hate trips, and I hate the idea of recreation, and I resent when someone suggests the need to change the atmosphere." (Mahmoud, 1987).
He also describes the state of bullying and alienation that the Jordanians suffer from when he describes his suffering in his childhood with the strong student who used to beat him, take his food from him, humiliate him, and insult him in front of everyone, so what is possible is that he accepts this insult and searches for a kinship linking him to justify his acceptance. Because of this humiliating situation: “Is not your cousin Feryal married with the cousin of my cousin’s cousin, my father’s cousin,” replied: “correct.” (Swalif, P.11)
He is thus making fun of the living reality that does not differ from this story that Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi tells about his childhood. The Jordanian citizen is subjected to humiliation and suffering at the hands of pressure forces in his society, and there is nothing he can do but accept that.
He narrates this in the tongue of the knowledgeable narrator who supervises the Jordanian scene, and describes it with all sincerity and boldness, and presents this in evidence that uses symbolism, condensation, contradiction, distortion, caricature, storytelling, paradox, imagination and popular stock, such as proverbs and societal expressions that are common in society. When he wants to evade accountability and oppression, then everything he wants to talk about is given the name "the thing" by the understandable encoding within the group he is addressing, that is, the entire Jordanian society. The term "The thing" is used in politics as well. Example: In a session, in the presence of a person a suspicious tries to pick up whisper vibrations among the speakers, one of the attendees asks his friend: “how do you see "The thing?” The other says: “can’t tell if the thing is good or bad?". "The thing" here could be anything: a policy, a well-known institution, or even an eavesdropping person. (Ibid: p.62) by doing so, it achieves the goals of cynicism represented in "attacking, assaulting, shaming, and aiming at a target." (Ahmed, 2008)
In addition, the ironic experience of Ahmed Hassan Al-Zu’bi begins on the cover, before entering the text. It makes the address adopted by the business a means for sending the intended message in the body, the title is really the first threshold of the text, such as headings and formulas specified for the introduction and conclusion. (Klaus, 2005).
He paid attention to the importance of the title, which gave the connotations that struggle with the text, and it provides the keys to the text and a code for its loaders after the experience of writing, so that the title would thus be "the protector of the Hajjaj conflict of the text, and it is also one of the most important elements through which the reader is prepared for the next proposition."
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Zakaria, I. Psychology of humor and laughter, P.180
Maryam, S., & Ilham, A.S. (2006). Al-Shamil in the Introduction to Psychology (first edition). Arab Renaissance House, Beirut, Lebanon, pp. 377-388
Ahmad, H., Al-Zu’bi: Swalif, P.25
Ibid: p. 26
Ibid, p. 12
Ibid, p. 30
ibid: p. 34
Ibid: p. 59
Ibid: p. 59
Ibid, p. 40
Mahmoud, A. (1987). Humor literature (first edition). Egypt Library, Cairo, Egypt, p.12
Ahmad, H., Al-Zu’bi, Swalif, p.11
Ahmed Saber and others: Research on Humor and Irony, Edition 1, Bouregreg House for Printing and Publishing, Rabat, Morocco, 2008, p. 5
Klaus, B. (2005). Linguistic Analysis of Text An Introduction to Basic Concepts, Translated by Said Behairy (first edition). Al-Mukhtar Foundation for Publishing and Distribution, Cairo, Egypt, p. 63
Muhammad, T. (2008). The Levels of Language in the Contemporary Arabic Narration (first edition). Dar Al-Diffusion Al-Arabi, Beirut, Lebanon, p. 42