Naguib Mahfouz: Between Fiction and History, ‘Essays of the Sadat Era’

If you’re in London tomorrow, Prof. Samia Mehrez will be speaking at the launch event for the second volume of Naguib Mahfouz’s nonfiction essays in translation, Essays of the Sadat Era:

The volume, translated by Russell Harris & Aran Byrne, follows Mahfouz’s On Literature and Philosophytrans. Byrne, a collection largely of Mahfouz’s juvenalia.

According to Gingko, this volume:

…brings together Mafouz’s non-fiction writings penned during the era of Sadat, whose presidency comprised some of the most dramatic events in Egyptian history: from Sadat’s “Corrective Revolution” to the Yom Kippur War with Israel and the eventual peace accord between the two countries, as well as his eventual assassination by Islamic extremists in 1981. In this collection Mahfouz deals with diverse political topics, such as socio-economic class, democracy and dictatorship, Islam and extremism – topics which still seem highly pertinent in relation to the situation in Egypt today. While Mahfouz’s opinions are often considered to be obscured in his fiction writing, here we gain an extraordinarily clear insight into his personal views – views which helped shape his novels. Essays of the Sadat Era is the second of four volumes that will see Mahfouz’s non-fiction work translated into English for the first time.

Samia Mehrez’s launch talk, set to be held at SAOS Thursday, July 27 at 6:30 p.m., will be introduced by scholar Rasheed El-Enany. Mehrez is a scholar-activist-translator who authored Egypt’s Culture Wars, among other works.


  1. Please fix your formatting. This rectangle text box should be enlarged. The left side text is cut off and unreadable..There is plenty of room to fill the page with text and image.  Thank you.

    1. Sorry, it looks fine on my machine. If you want to volunteer your time to fix it you’re welcome to!

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