June 11, 2019


Naguib Mahfouz’s magnificent epic trilogy of colonial Egypt appears here in one volume for the first time. The Nobel Prize—winning writer’s masterwork is the. Naguib Mahfouz’s magnificent epic trilogy of colonial Egypt appears here in one volume for the first time. The Nobel Prize-winning writer’s masterwork is the. Late novelist Naguib Mahfouz, pictured in , is considered the ‘godfather “ The Cairo Trilogy is a work on a par with Leo Tolstoy’s War and.

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View all 30 comments. This page was last edited on 6 Octoberat When we go beyong these obvious “greats” and seek to identify the greater context and canon, we have a difficult threshold question to answer: All trklogy same they have been recognized officially, and the country will be governed according to their results.

Perhaps the eldest son, Yasin, best represents the view of love as mere desire. I have no excuse, and my missing him until now is only further proof that there are too many books waiting to be discovered in this world.

The Cairo Trilogy

Cair characters slowly open to us through daily experience and then, without warning, a tragedy or celebration occurs. Against the wishes of his father, he insists on pursuing philosophical truths and the search for meaning in an existential world.

Thanks to this man, who won the Nobel Prize for Literature inI feel a special kinship with the mahfoiz of Egypt. Please try again later. Jun 15, Pages.

Arabic Treasures: how The Cairo Trilogy is a family saga for the ages

Prominent among the themes of the first novel is the freedom of the family or lack of freedom under the authoritarian rule of the father. Mahfouz was disillusioned by the revolution and the repressive era that it introduced. Filled with compelling drama, earthy humor, and remarkable insight, The Cairo Trilogy is the achievement of a master storyteller. Like many Egyptian writers and intellectuals, Mahfouz was on an Islamic fundamentalist “death list.

Sep 21, Phrodrick rated it it was amazing.

Children of Our Alley is an allegory in which God appears in the character of Gebelawi, Adam as “Adham”, while other characters represent the prophets Jesus and Muhammad. The old ways ciaro changing, the future is uncertain. Here’s how the book begins: In particular, the two grandsons Ahmad and Abd al-Muni’m Shawkat pursue opposing ideological avenues concerning atheism and faith, but both camps Communism; Muslim Brethren fall afoul of the authoritarian government.


Finally, Kamal becomes the spokesperson for Ahmad’s view of humanity–an individual’s continual evolution of belief towards greater truth Kamal that, when multiplied by everyone Ahmadwill play an historic role in uplifting human life.

Because they are not going to take jobs. Kamal will eventually satisfy his bodily needs with girls from the brothel district while he lives an ascetic life of the philosophic writer and teacher.

Naguib Mahfouz | Books | The Guardian

Time becomes the dominant theme here. Yasin’s opportunistic son Ridwan finds a whole different route to success, currying favour in an age-old jahfouz still surprising way. This can be seen in such minor details as the religious phrases used as part of everyday conversation even by prostitutes and hedonists.

Having don so, he calls for all-out war against nahfouz intruders, buts finds that the people have changed their mindset and are not willing to fight. Palace Walk The first of the three books is set around the time of the first Egyptian revolution of Gordimer’s writing has long dealt with moral and racial issues, particularly apartheid in South Africa.

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On the opposing side of these ideologies is Ahmad. Whichever way a critic chooses to assess the three books that comprise The Cairo Trilogy Palace WalkPalace of Desireand Sugar Street one arrives at a similar conclusion: The discrepancy between the tyrannical father and husband and the bon vivant tambourinist, generous friend, inebriated debaucher are an alternate plot, which is eventually noticed by his son Yasin most like him in behavior.

In other words, Ahmad portrays himself as everything he is not, just as the historical backdrop of the trilogy shows how the free reign of British colonialism to do whatever it wants is anything but free of guilt. After several affairs and scandals, Yasin attempts to find monogamy with his second wife Zaynab, but again he fails to do so.

The Cairo Trilogy: Palace Walk / Palace of Desire / Sugar Street by Naguib Mahfouz

The minor character the Shayk, goes from revered to irrelevant to pathetic. The second novel, Qasr al-Shawqis named after the street where his eldest son Yasin and his family live, whereas the third, Al-Sukkariyyais named after the street where cairi daughter Khadijah and her family live.


Reading the books,I felt that I was living in those streets of”Al Sukareyya” or “Kasr Al Shawq” and knew the characters who became part of my family or my friends through more than pages I could live and breath with them layer after layer I even had tears in my eyes after the death of my favourite character at the end of the first book”Bayn Al Qasrayn” In short the 3 books are sad painful but ironical simple yet deep.

Mahfouz was very satisfied by this and saw it as another proof that the Israeli-Egyptian peace treaty of should be supported.

The world is full of contradictions, as are these very human characters. The other recurring theme that affected me was the way that there is no foundation for stability for these characters. The Egyptian novelist Naguib Mahfouzwho has died aged 94, was the Arab world’s most prominent literary figure. I found most of Palace of Desire very gripping, but there were a few disappointments. I am somewhat at a loss to know how to review this work, as I think that to really understand it, you need to know something about Egyptian history and Islamic culture.

However, that’s a sign that the story has completely caught you, and that the book is great. According to Bergson’s philosophy, one needs to make a distinction between psychological time and real, physical time; psychological time is apprehended through intuition, whereas real time is apprehended through the intellect. Articles needing additional references from December All articles needing additional references Books with missing cover Articles containing Arabic-language text Wikipedia articles with GND identifiers.

The myriad characters and events are handled with great skill and the writer is seen throughout to be in complete control of his material. Much of the novel— especially from the second volume onward—finds the entire family in a liminal state modeled externally by Aisha and internally by Kamal. Books by Naguib Mahfouz. Sep 09, Neil R.