Naguib Mahfouz: His Life and Times

Naguib Mahfouz: His Life and Times

AUC Press

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Rasheed El-Enany

Naguib Mahfouz (1911 Ð2006) is the only Arab writer to have been awarded the Nobel prize for literature. The author of thirty-five novels, fifteen collections of short stories, twenty-five film screenplays, numerous critical works, and in his later years over five hundred short fictions based on his dreams (partly published as The Dreams and Dreams of Departure by the AUC Press in 2004 and 2007), he has been hugely influential on several generations of Arab writers, and his books are now read in more than forty languages around the world. In its citation for the Nobel prize, the Swedish Academy of Letters noted that Mahfouz Òthrough works rich in nuanceÑnow clear-sightedly realistic, now evocatively ambiguousÑhas formed an Arabic narrative art that applies to all mankind.Ó And he has been described by Nadine Gordimer as Òone of the greatest creative talents in the realm of the novel in the world,Ó by Ahdaf Soueif as a Òmassively important influence on Arabic literature,Ó and by Alaa Al Aswany as Òthe founder of the new Arab novel . . . . our father.Ó

In this first biography of Naguib Mahfouz in English, Rasheed El-Enany looks at the life of the man and the work of the writer, and assesses the oeuvre and legacy of a towering figure in the Egyptian and Arab literary world who was able to reach far beyond his own linguistic and cultural boundaries to an admiring readership across the globe.


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