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Middle Eastern Literature: The Woman's Bath by Mind Map: Middle Eastern Literature: The Woman's Bath
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Middle Eastern Literature: The Woman's Bath

Ulfat Al-Idlibi

Ulfat Al-Idlibi is a native Syrian woman born in 1912, Damascus. She started writing in 1947 right when women in Syria were earing more rights.


This story is a about a girl who has a grandmother and mom who always fight about one thing; public baths. Her grandmother always insists to go once a month to the public bath but her mother thinks a woman of 70 years should not continue to. The girl wants to find out grandma's secret about the public baths and why they have such a nice ambience in them.

Theme: Respect

In the story the family doesn't seem to really respects the old grandma. Her daughter-in-law always argues and criticizes her and the grandma would just leave her to pray with her beaded rosary. The grandma is also lonely, her husband had died many years ago. In the story once the girl is about to go with her to the bath the grandma said "Noone goes with me now except the servants." She gave a deep hearted-sigh


In the middle East, men and women aren't that close friends. Usually they are only close when they are getting married. Afterwards they must be independent and to be honest they barely know each other. Many marriges are made by the parents, who chose who their sons/daughters marry. I'm not saying that they are not always strangers but most of the time when they get married; they are. Also many men find women useless, they should only do housework and keep the kids. So what I learned is that girls (women) are really close to each other. They bathe each other they talk and share things. Sometimes their husbands don't care how their wife is feeling or how her day was. All the women confide in each other. I learnt that when the grandma and the girl were in the bath. I could tell by how the girls in the bath were acting.

I Liked

I liked this short story because I found it really interesting how the author took a boring subject and made it interesting. The family's problem is that they don't want the grandma going to the public baths. It doesn't sound like the most interesting subject but Ulfat adds a lot of detail and depth into it. She connects why the grandma loves going and things you wouldn't think of adding.


10 Famous Authors in the Middle East: Nizami Aruzi was a famous Persian author in Iran during the 12th century. He was most famous for his book Chahar Maqala (four discourses.) Hanan al-Shaykh is the author of the book ‘From the Rooftops’ he is from Lebanon Mohamed Sudqi Ayyash is the writer of the Bahraini anthem Natan Yonatan is an Israeli poet during the 1960's . He's won many prizes and his first book was “Dusty Paths”. Mahmoud Darwish is known as the Palestine’s National poet and is his first work is Asafir bila ajniha (Wingless birds) Turki al-Hamad is from Saudi Arabia his most famous book is  called ‘Adama’. Waddah al-Yaman(born 2nd half of the 17th century) is regarded as the national poet of Yemen. Shafiq alkamali is the author of the National Iraqi anthem. Naphtali Herz Imber is the author of the National Israeli anthem Sheikh Mubarak bin Saïf al-Thani is the author of the national Qatar anthem.

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