chapter  3
Gender Trauma on the Line
Lebanese War Literature
ByLindsey Moore
Pages 41

This chapter highlights some of the diverse ways in which Lebanese writing engages civil violence and some of the stakes involved. It focuses on gender norms and sexual violence as structuring aspects rather than merely effects of the Lebanese war. The representation of gender trauma is not just (though it is often also) an allegorical device. The chapter explores ways in which Lebanese war literature dissects and imaginatively transforms the combined effects of (post)colonial history and gender construction, with a critical emphasis on chronotopic, (re)orientated and materialized bodies. It discusses denaturalize the belief that the front line was the physical manifestation of inexorable sectarianism, or failed nationhood. The fiction examined extrapolates from specific material sites (checkpoints and deserted spaces) to a symbolic front line. The chapter also discusses re-turn, or turn again to the Lebanese war and specifically to the front line, in order 'to perceive the contours of the background': the intersecting causes of civil violence.