An excellent graphic novel by the talented, Zahra Al-Mahdi. We, the borrowed is vivid storytelling at its peak.
What I found interesting was how some ‘text’ was represented in symbols, that are understandable by both English and Arabic readers.
“Coming up with the stories behind this book stemmed from my frustration with all things related to bureaucracy; processes that are supposed to make life easier, but end up creating more complex difficulties. Within these frustrations, I found that I was able to show underlying connections that tie the personal, the social, the political, and physical impacts on a society and its subjects. The major link I try to illustrate is the one between language, and the physical body. The two protagonists both suffer with communicating linguistically with close family members as well as official institutions. As a result to these series of ruptures in communications, their bodies become subject to different types of trauma.” – Zahra Al-Mahdi
‘One of the greatest graphic novels I have ever read’
‘Brilliant how the illustrations were able to tell the story so vividly. The absurdity of life in the Arab world is beautifully portrayed, along with the pervasive hopelessness felt by those who try to make sense of it all and lose their minds in the process.’
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Sarah Ahmed is a 24 year old, Network & Security in information technology graduate. She is the founder, & curator of the Middle Eastern e-mag, Jaffat El Aqlam. When she’s not stressing out about self-made deadlines, she experiments with glitch art, film photography & watercolors. She listens to what her family calls, ‘alien music’ and takes pictures of plants in her city.