Reading the Aging Narratives: Towards Enabling Taṣawwuf in the Operative Framework
AbstractThere is a growing recognition in the field of old age studies that a universal spiritual-shift takes place in the elderly people during their old age and that the shift brings a whole lot of changes how s/he views the self, others and cosmos. Subsequently, arguments have been made that old people’s communications, therefore, cannot be taken out of that specific world-view. However, the literary analytical systems are yet to accommodate spiritual analytic frameworks into its broad structure, though individual attempts in terms of reading the texts are made. This paper tries to engage with the gap in literary critical theory, so as to bring, broadly, a spiritual gerontological framework into the forefront of critical studies. It’s argued, in the paper, that the Islamic spiritual science, Taṣawwuf, can certainly go a long way in contributing to build an alternative critical narrative framework. If enabled, this operative framework can potentially threaten the way the world, text, genres, and thoughts are currently understood, perceived and talked about, and bring out alternative meanings.
Keywords: aging narratives, literary theory, literary gerontology, spiritual gerontology, contemplative aging, gero-transcendence, Taṣawwuf.