The thesis is divided into three parts. The first part deals
with the history of drama in Arabic Literature since the first plays
were produced. Furthermore, it deals with the history of the theatre
in Egypt, tracing its development and especially its relationship with
different governments at different times. Lastly, this part of the
thesis deals with the history of dramatic writing and the reasons which
led to the development of the play for reading as against the play for
The second part deals with selected works of Ba-Kathir. His
first attempts to write plays are dealt with as an attempt of his to
find a medium through which to express himself. Because the emphasis
hero is on language, there is some detailed textual criticism. When
Ba-Kathir rejects poetry as a means of expressing dialogue in plays
but still finds interest in historical subjects, we come to his
historical novels. These are dealt with in their relationship to
Ba-Kathir's ideas. Then follows tire section on the comedies, which are
both social and political and the most successful works by Ba-Kathir.
In the next section, his tragedies are treated as religious plays
because this is what they are. The last section of this part of the
thesis deals with the epic of Umar b. al-Khattab, which is the most
glaring failure of Ba-Kathir.
Part Three deals with Ba-Kathir’s ideas and how these relate to
his use of the Arabic language.