The final frontier: Science fiction in Arab literature
Arabic literature stretches over a thousand years and has left very few stones unturned. From the classic tales of A Thousand and One Nights to the modern stories that occupy the shelves of bookstores throughout the Arab World, Arab writers have carved out a name for themselves as being bold and intrepid - sometimes at great personal cost considering the oft-maligned lack of press freedom in the region.
However, there is one final frontier that tends to go unexplored by Arab writers: science fiction. The West had its science fiction renaissance in the mid-20th Century, but the films, books, comics, and tv shows of the Middle East rarely take us “where no man has gone before”. Nevertheless, science fiction isn’t a totally alien concept in Arab literature - in fact, elements of the genre can be traced back to pre-Islamic times! Continue reading below »
We've gathered some of the most notable science fiction writings from the Arab world both past and present. Though we might be a ways away from seeing an Arabic “Star Trek”, momentum is building for the science fiction fan in the Middle East.