While I think it might be more salutary—for the press and for Neil—to focus on editorial work, it is good that we’ve heard from the publishing house, which is located at the old campus and near Tahrir, and that everyone’s OK.
Our AUC Press offices were trashed on Friday. The police had broken into the AUC to use the roof of our wing to fire on protesters at the junction of Sheikh Rihan and Qasr al-Aini (we found empty CS canisters and shotgun cartridges up there). And persons unknown ransacked our rooms. Drawers and files emptied, windows broken, cupboards and computers smashed. But it could have been much worse.
One can assume that not everything will be on schedule for the 2011 releases: I was looking forward to A Tunisian Tale by Hassouna Mosbahi, translated by Max Weiss; Rasha al-Ameer’s Judgement Day, translated by Jonathan Wright; and Miral al-Tahawy’s IPAF-shortlisted Brooklyn Heights, to be translated by Samah Selim, as well as the Galal Amin and the Essential Naguib Mahfouz listed on the forthcoming page for early this year.
Insha’allah, they will all come.
Meanwhile, the best to Neil and everyone at AUC Press.
Update: AUC Press Director Mark Linz spoke with Inside Higher Ed about the office trashing, noting that the Galal Amin should now be available in March (instead of February) and that staff are working on getting the office back in one piece.
Also: As far as I can tell, all of Cairo’s bookstores are fine (there is a rumor of a bookstore hit in Rafah, but that is unconfirmed); some in Cairo have re-opened and others are hoping to re-open soon.