Identity Erasure in Fadia Faqir’s Pillars of Salt, My Name is Salma & Leila Aboulela’s Minaret


  • Ahmad M.S. Abu Baker Al al-Bayt University



This article aims to highlight the desire for identity erasure as a dominant theme in Fadia Faqir’s Pillars of Salt, My Name is Salma & Leila Aboulela’s Minaret. It also examines the process of rethinking and reshaping identity, its concomitant process of labelling and the desire for identity erasure in the target novels using insights from Postcolonial Theory, Freudian Psychoanalysis, Jungian Archetypal Criticism, and Derrida’s Deconstruction. Textual analysis reveals that Faqir and Aboulela aim to highlight the predicament of females in Arab societies and in England where they suffer from patriarchy, alienation, trauma and PTSD that cause them to wish to erase their past and their identities and to develop thanatos to escape the existential situations they find themselves in, and in which they suffer from patriarchy, traumatic loss of/separation from their loved ones, and sometimes a loss of virginity and, hence, a sinful past. Patriarchy, as in oppressive ideology, has a destructive effect upon female experience and female identity. In a world in which patriarchy still dominates, the novels in question function as an eye-opener on the need to empower women and free them from its tenacious grip.   

Author Biography

  • Ahmad M.S. Abu Baker, Al al-Bayt University

    Associate Professor of English & Comparative Literature at Al al-Bayt University, Jordan. Doctorate of English & Comparative Literature from Murdoch University/Western Australia in 2002. 19 published articles in international refereed indexed journals on a variety of topics including: postcolonial theory, identity, Emily Dickinson, War Poetry. A Contributor of the five volume set The Dictionary of World Literary Characters published by Facts on File. Inc.