Anti-hero in The Seventh Day of Creation: A Campbellian Reading




Abd-al Khaliq al-Rikabi, archetype, hero, Joseph Campbell, The Seventh Day of Creation


From the mythological point of view, the hero of a literary text is an archetype in the collective unconscious who embodies the collective ideals of a culture while searching for his/her individual identity at the narrative level. In his seminal The Hero with a Thousand Faces (1949), Joseph Campbell addresses the archetypal function of the hero in three main stages: departure, initiation, and return. Drawing on Campbell’s model, this study examines the journey of the hero in the second storyline of The Seventh Day of Creation, i.e., Al-Sirah al-Mutlaqiyeh. Sirah al-Zatiyeh is a sequence to another study by same authors that examined the first storyline of the novel (Al-Sirah al-Zatiyeh) with regard to the author’s personality and individuation. Proceeding from the analysis of Al-Sirah al-Zatiyeh, this study considers Mutlaq as an antihero based on Campbell’s model and identifies a Hegelian dialectic relationship between the two storylines of the novel. Al-Sirah al-Zatiyeh and Al-Sirah al-Mutlaqiyeh, which respectively represent the individual code and the social code, are designed to showcase an ideal Iraqi society. More precisely, highlighting the opposition in the two main parts of the narrative points at the movement and dynamism desired by the author for changing the future of the country.

Author Biographies

Abdollah  Hosseini, Kharazmi University, Tehran, Iran

(PhD) Associate Professor 

Department of Arabic language and literature,

Kharazmi University, Tehran, Iran

Zahra Izadi, Kharazmi University, Tehran, Iran

Department of Arabic language and literature,

Kharazmi University, Tehran, Iran


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Date of Publication

2023-10-05 — Updated on 2024-01-02

How to Cite

 Hosseini, A., & Izadi, Z. (2024). Anti-hero in The Seventh Day of Creation: A Campbellian Reading. International Journal of Arabic-English Studies, 24(1), 41–56.



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