The present paper focuses on the linguistic image of the Oriental world depicted in the essay–afterword to the book of short stories Femmes d’Alger dans leur appartement [Women of Algiers] by Assia Djebar. Entitled after the famous painting by Eugène Delacroix the book’s aim is to show the history of Algeria and of Algerian women since the short visit paid to the country by the French painter up to 1980s.
The author of this paper wants to focus on the language Assia Djebar uses in her text. Thanks to the recurrence of some keywords she manages to render in her text the typical way of describing the Oriental world in 19th century (the Romantic fascination for Oriental lands and customs) and afterwards the seclusion and submission of Algerian women resulting from patriarchal tradition.
However, it seems that Assia Djebar uses her language as a cubist painter (by the way, she refers in her essay to the painting Women of Algiers by Picasso), she deconstructs the linguistic reality to create a new world for Oriental women where, at least linguistically, seclusion changes into final liberation.