Love and war
Today, in Philadelphia's excellent Big Jar Books, I chanced upon the following on the back cover of a Vintage paperback edition of Chaucer's Troilus and Cressida:
"In medieval literature, Troy represents the perfection of normal human life on the brink of its destruction by a more corrupted force. By writing about this norm, Chaucer was creating a work that could help bring a declining society back to a state of health. The whole perpetual love theme in Chaucer relates to this, because love is one of the first relations to go awry in an unhealthy society."
As in fourteenth-century England, so in 1990s Algeria. Khadra knew what he was doing when he opened Morituri with a scene of poisoned love.
© Peter Rozovsky 2006