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The Satiric Method of Ibn Dāniyāl: Morality and Anti-morality in Tayf al-Khayāl

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Ibn Dāniyāl's (d. 1311) shadow play Tayf al-Khayāl takes as its setting Cairo in the early Mamlūk period, a city depicted in the play as decadent and yet subjected to ineffective moral reforms. The play's complex satiric response to such reforms is the subject of this study. Contemporary theories of satire, especially Frank Palmeri's approach to narrative satire, are used to shed light on Ibn Dāniyāl's method of constructing a sense of satiric ambiguity. Special attention is given to the playwright's use of misplaced religious language and his ironic portrayal of the relationship between power and morality.


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