Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Naguib Mahfouz obituary

Novelist and screenwriter Naguib Mahfouz, winner of the 1988 Nobel Prize for Literature, died at the end of last month at the age of 95. There's an interesting obituary in The Economist.
Great writers often seem to haunt their cities. Joyce and Kafka remain ghostly figures on the streets of Dublin and Prague, and the elfin presence of Borges is still glimpsed, through cigarette smoke and tango sweat, in the caf├ęs of Buenos Aires. In the ancient city of Cairo, it is Naguib Mahfouz who does the haunting.

This is not simply because he was a towering literary figure, and the joyous chronicler of a turbulent Egyptian century. Nor is it just because he populated his works—35 novels, more than 20 film scripts and a dozen collections of stories, essays, anecdotes and dreams—with a cast of memorably strong urban characters. Mr Mahfouz himself embodied the essence of what makes the bruising, raucous, chaotic human anthill of Cairo possible.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.