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The Cairo Trilogy

by Naguib Mahfouz

  • Hardcover
    $51.50
PUBLISHED: 28th September 2001
ISBN: 9781857152487
ANNOTATION:
Palace Walk, Palace of Desire and Sugar Street, published in Arabic in 1956-7 and translated into English in 1990, are the three novels which first presented Egyptian urban life to the English-speaking world. Said to have been inspired by Galsworthy's The Forsyte Saga (and Mahfouz, like Galsworthy, won the Nobel Prize for literature) it has an additional depth of characterization and insight which remind one more of Mann's Buddenbrooks. The novels follow the history between 1917 and 1944 of the Cairo family of businessman al-Sayyid Ahmad Abd al-Jawad - the totally chauvinistic father himself, his subjugated, timid, sensitive wife, and his five children - two daughters and three sons, all under his hand but each a distinct personality who fights in his or her own way towards the opportunity for self-expression in an often oppressive Muslim society. All this is set against the political background of the conflict between the Ottoman Caliphate and its repressive tradition, and the battle for a new independent nation - beginning with the 1919 nationalist revolution and ending with the mass arrest of political activists in 1944. The characters are brilliantly and sympathetically invented: the imperious father with his secret life of drinking and whoring, his unassertive but strong mother, his three sons - one idealistic, one dissolute, one a searching intellectual - and repressed daughters. With its vivid picture of Egyptian city life which still clings to age-old customs - folk tales and songs, popular tunes, proverbs, traditions - it is not only a panoramic picture of a particular family in a singular place during exciting and dangerous years but, a 'great' book in every sense. (Kirkus UK)
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  • Hardcover
    $51.50
PUBLISHED: 28th September 2001
ISBN: 9781857152487
ANNOTATION:
Palace Walk, Palace of Desire and Sugar Street, published in Arabic in 1956-7 and translated into English in 1990, are the three novels which first presented Egyptian urban life to the English-speaking world. Said to have been inspired by Galsworthy's The Forsyte Saga (and Mahfouz, like Galsworthy, won the Nobel Prize for literature) it has an additional depth of characterization and insight which remind one more of Mann's Buddenbrooks. The novels follow the history between 1917 and 1944 of the Cairo family of businessman al-Sayyid Ahmad Abd al-Jawad - the totally chauvinistic father himself, his subjugated, timid, sensitive wife, and his five children - two daughters and three sons, all under his hand but each a distinct personality who fights in his or her own way towards the opportunity for self-expression in an often oppressive Muslim society. All this is set against the political background of the conflict between the Ottoman Caliphate and its repressive tradition, and the battle for a new independent nation - beginning with the 1919 nationalist revolution and ending with the mass arrest of political activists in 1944. The characters are brilliantly and sympathetically invented: the imperious father with his secret life of drinking and whoring, his unassertive but strong mother, his three sons - one idealistic, one dissolute, one a searching intellectual - and repressed daughters. With its vivid picture of Egyptian city life which still clings to age-old customs - folk tales and songs, popular tunes, proverbs, traditions - it is not only a panoramic picture of a particular family in a singular place during exciting and dangerous years but, a 'great' book in every sense. (Kirkus UK)

Annotation

Palace Walk, Palace of Desire and Sugar Street, published in Arabic in 1956-7 and translated into English in 1990, are the three novels which first presented Egyptian urban life to the English-speaking world. Said to have been inspired by Galsworthy's The Forsyte Saga (and Mahfouz, like Galsworthy, won the Nobel Prize for literature) it has an additional depth of characterization and insight which remind one more of Mann's Buddenbrooks. The novels follow the history between 1917 and 1944 of the Cairo family of businessman al-Sayyid Ahmad Abd al-Jawad - the totally chauvinistic father himself, his subjugated, timid, sensitive wife, and his five children - two daughters and three sons, all under his hand but each a distinct personality who fights in his or her own way towards the opportunity for self-expression in an often oppressive Muslim society. All this is set against the political background of the conflict between the Ottoman Caliphate and its repressive tradition, and the battle for a new independent nation - beginning with the 1919 nationalist revolution and ending with the mass arrest of political activists in 1944. The characters are brilliantly and sympathetically invented: the imperious father with his secret life of drinking and whoring, his unassertive but strong mother, his three sons - one idealistic, one dissolute, one a searching intellectual - and repressed daughters. With its vivid picture of Egyptian city life which still clings to age-old customs - folk tales and songs, popular tunes, proverbs, traditions - it is not only a panoramic picture of a particular family in a singular place during exciting and dangerous years but, a 'great' book in every sense. (Kirkus UK)

Publisher Description

Features Palace Walk, Palace of desire & Sugar street,

Review

"The highest achievement of "The Cairo Trilogy" [is] the creation of memorable characters whose circumstances of life are unimaginably remote from our own, but whose aspirations are the same. "The Cairo Trilogy" extends our knowledge of life; it also confirms it." -"Boston Globe" "Luminous...All the magic, mystery and suffering of Egypt in the 1920s are conveyed on a human scale." -"New York Times Book Review" "The alleys, the houses, the palaces and mosques and the people who live among them are evoked as vividly as the streets of London were conjured up by Dickens." -"Newsweek" "A masterful kaleidoscope of emotions, ideas and perspective. Mahfouz has captured a family and its homeland at one gloriously varied moment in a cycle." -"Newsday" "Mahfouz presents us with a different concept of the world and makes it real. His genius is not just that he shows us Egyptian colonial society in all its complexity; it is that he makes us look through the vision of his "The highest achievement of "The Cairo Trilogy" [is] the creation of memorable characters whose circumstances of life are unimaginably remote from our own, but whose aspirations are the same. "The Cairo Trilogy" extends our knowledge of life; it also confirms it." -"Boston Globe" "Luminous...All the magic, mystery and suffering of Egypt in the 1920s are conveyed on a human scale." -"New York Times Book Review" "The alleys, the houses, the palaces and mosques and the people who live among them are evoked as vividly as the streets of London were conjured up by Dickens." -"Newsweek" "A masterful kaleidoscope of emotions, ideas and perspective. Mahfouz has captured a family and its homeland at one gloriously varied moment in a cycle." -"Newsday" "Mahfouz presents us with a different concept of the world and makes i "The highest achievement of "The Cairo Trilogy" is the creation of memorable characters whose circumstances of life are unimaginably remote from our own, but whose aspirations are the same. "The Cairo Trilogy" extends our knowledge of life; it also confirms it." -"Boston Globe" "Luminous...All the magic, mystery and suffering of Egypt in the 1920s are conveyed on a human scale." -"New York Times Book Review" "The alleys, the houses, the palaces and mosques and the people who live among them are evoked as vividly as the streets of London were conjured up by Dickens." -"Newsweek" "A masterful kaleidoscope of emotions, ideas and perspective. Mahfouz has captured a family and its homeland at one gloriously varied moment in a cycle." -"Newsday" "Mahfouz presents us with a different concept of the world and makes it real. His genius is not just that he shows us Egyptian colonial society in all its complexity; it is that he makes us look through the vision of his vivid characters and see people and ideas that no longer seem alien." -"Philadelphia Inquirer" "The highest achievement of "The Cairo Trilogy [is] the creation of memorable characters whose circumstances of life are unimaginably remote from our own, but whose aspirations are the same. "The Cairo Trilogy extends our knowledge of life; it also confirms it." -"Boston Globe "Luminous...All the magic, mystery and suffering of Egypt in the 1920s are conveyed on a human scale." -"New York Times Book Review "The alleys, the houses, the palaces and mosques and the people who live among them are evoked as vividly as the streets of London were conjured up by Dickens." -"Newsweek "A masterful kaleidoscope of emotions, ideas and perspective. Mahfouz has captured a family and its homeland at one gloriously varied moment in a cycle." -"Newsday "Mahfouz presents us with a different concept of the world and makes it real. His genius is not just that he shows us Egyptian colonial society in all its complexity; it is that he makes us look through the vision of his vivid characters and see people and ideas that no longer seem alien." -"Philadelphia Inquirer

Kirkus UK Review

Palace Walk, Palace of Desire and Sugar Street, published in Arabic in 1956-7 and translated into English in 1990, are the three novels which first presented Egyptian urban life to the English-speaking world. Said to have been inspired by Galsworthy's The Forsyte Saga (and Mahfouz, like Galsworthy, won the Nobel Prize for literature) it has an additional depth of characterization and insight which remind one more of Mann's Buddenbrooks. The novels follow the history between 1917 and 1944 of the Cairo family of businessman al-Sayyid Ahmad Abd al-Jawad - the totally chauvinistic father himself, his subjugated, timid, sensitive wife, and his five children - two daughters and three sons, all under his hand but each a distinct personality who fights in his or her own way towards the opportunity for self-expression in an often oppressive Muslim society. All this is set against the political background of the conflict between the Ottoman Caliphate and its repressive tradition, and the battle for a new independent nation - beginning with the 1919 nationalist revolution and ending with the mass arrest of political activists in 1944. The characters are brilliantly and sympathetically invented: the imperious father with his secret life of drinking and whoring, his unassertive but strong mother, his three sons - one idealistic, one dissolute, one a searching intellectual - and repressed daughters. With its vivid picture of Egyptian city life which still clings to age-old customs - folk tales and songs, popular tunes, proverbs, traditions - it is not only a panoramic picture of a particular family in a singular place during exciting and dangerous years but, a 'great' book in every sense. (Kirkus UK)

Product Details

Author
Naguib Mahfouz
Series
Everyman's Library classics
Year
2001
ISBN-10
1857152484
ISBN-13
9781857152487
Format
Hardcover
Publication Date
2001-09-28
Country of Publication
United Kingdom
Translated from
Arabic
Media
Book
Publisher
Everyman
Pages
1376
Subtitle
Palace Walk, Palace of Desire, Sugar Street
Short Title
The Cairo Trilogy
Language
English
Audience
General/Trade