Mahfouz, Naguib


Mahfouz, Naguib
born Dec. 11, 1911, Cairo, Egypt

Egyptian writer.

He worked in the cultural section of the Egyptian civil service from 1934 to 1971. His major work, the Cairo Trilogy (1956–57)
including the novels Palace Walk, Palace of Desire, and Sukkariyah
represents a penetrating overview of 20th-century Egyptian society. Subsequent works offer critical views of the Egyptian monarchy, colonialism, and contemporary Egypt. Other well-known novels include Midaq Alley (1947), Children of Gebelawi (1959), and Miramar (1967). He also wrote short-story collections, more than 30 screenplays, and several stage plays. In 1988 he became the first Arabic writer to win the Nobel Prize for Literature.

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▪ 2007
Najīb Maḥfūẓ 
      Egyptian author (b. Dec. 11, 1911, Cairo, Egypt—d. Aug. 30, 2006, Cairo), was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1988, the first Arabic writer to be so honoured. Mahfouz wrote more than 45 novels and short-story collections, some 30 screenplays, and several plays. In many of his works he offered critical views of the old Egyptian monarchy, British colonialism, and contemporary Egypt and explored social issues involving women and political prisoners. Mahfouz was the son of a civil servant, and after attending Cairo University he worked in the cultural section of the Egyptian civil service from 1934 until his retirement in 1971. His early novels, such as Rādūbīs (1943; “Radobis”), were set in ancient Egypt, but he had turned to describing modern Egyptian society by the time he began his major work, Al-Thulāthiyyah (1956–57), known as The Cairo Trilogy. The three novels, which depict the lives of three generations of Cairo families from World War I until after the 1952 military coup that overthrew King Farouk, provided a penetrating overview of 20th-century Egyptian thought, attitudes, and social change. Mahfouz's novel Awlād ḥāratinā (1959; Children of the Alley) was banned in Egypt for a time because of its controversial treatment of religion and its use of characters based on Muhammad, Moses, and other figures. Owing in part to their outrage over the work, Islamic militants later called for his death, and in 1994 Mahfouz was stabbed in the neck. Aṣdāʾ al-sīrah al-dhātiyyah (Echoes of an Autobiography), which was a collection of parables and sayings, was published in 1996, the same year that the Naguib Mahfouz Medal for Literature was established to honour Arabic writers.

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▪ Egyptian writer
also spelled  Najīb Maḥfūẓ  
born Dec. 11, 1911, Cairo, Egypt
died Aug. 30, 2006, Cairo
 Egyptian novelist and screenplay writer, who was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1988, the first Arabic writer to be so honoured.

      The son of a civil servant, Mahfouz attended Cairo University and worked in the cultural section of the Egyptian civil service from 1934 until his retirement in 1971. His early novels, such as Rādūbīs (1943; “Radobis”), were set in ancient Egypt, but he had turned to describing modern Egyptian society by the time he began his major work, Al-Thulāthiyyah (1956–57), known as The Cairo Trilogy. Its three novels—Bayn al-qaṣrayn (1956; Palace Walk), Qaṣr al-shawq (1957; Palace of Desire), and Al-Sukkariyyah (1957; Sugar Street)—depict the lives of three generations of different families in Cairo from World War I until after the 1952 military coup that overthrew King Farouk. The trilogy provides a penetrating overview of 20th-century Egyptian thought, attitudes, and social change.

      In subsequent works Mahfouz offered critical views of the old Egyptian monarchy, British colonialism, and contemporary Egypt. Several of his more notable novels deal with social issues involving women and political prisoners. His novel Awlād ḥāratinā (1959; Children of the Alley) was banned in Egypt for a time because of its controversial treatment of religion and its use of characters based on Muhammad, Moses, and other figures. Due in part to their outrage over the work, Islamic militants later called for his death, and in 1994 Mahfouz was stabbed in the neck.

      Mahfouz's other novels include Al-Liṣṣ wa-al-kilāb (1961; The Thief and the Dogs), Al-Shaḥḥādh (1965; The Beggar), Mīrāmār (1967; Miramar), Afrāḥ al-qubba (1981; Wedding Song), and Ḥadīth al-ṣabāḥ wa-al-masāʾ (1987; Morning and Evening Talk). His achievements as a short-story writer are demonstrated in the collections Dunyā Allāh (1963; God's World) and The Seventh Heaven (2005). Mahfouz wrote more than 45 novels and short-story collections, as well as some 30 screenplays and several plays. Aṣdāʾ al-sīrah al-dhātiyyah (1996; Echoes of an Autobiography) is a collection of parables and his sayings. In 1996 the Naguib Mahfouz Medal for Literature was established to honour Arabic writers.

Additional Reading
Rasheed El-Enany, Naguib Mahfouz: His Life and Times (2007), is a biography. Mahfouz's life and work are discussed in Matti Moosa, The Early Novels of Naguib Mahfouz (1994), covering works though 1959; and Rasheed El-Enany, Naguib Mahfouz: The Pursuit of Meaning (1993), treating also subsequent works. Michael Beard and Adnan Haydar (eds.), Naguib Mahfouz: From Regional Fame to Global Recognition (1993), collects analyses of his works.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

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  • Mahfouz, Naguib — (n. 1911, El Cairo, Egipto). Escritor egipcio. Trabajó en la sección cultural del servicio civil egipcio de 1934 hasta 1971. Su obra principal, Trilogía de El Cairo (1956–57) que incluye las novelas Palace Walk, Palace of Desire, [Paseo en el… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Mahfouz, Naguib —  (1912–2006) Egyptian novelist; awarded Nobel Prize for Literature in 1988 …   Bryson’s dictionary for writers and editors

  • Naguib Mahfouz — نجيب محفوظ Naguib Mahfouz Nom de naissance نجيب محفوظ, Naǧīb Maḥfūẓ Activités …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Mahfouz — (Naguib) (né en 1912) écrivain égyptien. Auteur notam. d une trilogie romanesque (Bayn al Qasrayn, 1956; Qasr ach Chawq, 1957; As Sukkariyyah, 1957); son plus célèbre roman est le Passage des miracles (trad. 1970). Prix Nobel de littér. 1988 …   Encyclopédie Universelle

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  • Naguib Mahfouz — Nagib Mahfuz Nagib Mahfuz (arabisch ‏نجيب محفوظ ‎, DMG Naǧīb Maḥfūẓ, auch Nagib Machfus oder Naguib Mahfouz, * 11. Dezember 1911 in Kairo; † 30. August 2006 ebendort) war ein ägyptischer Schriftsteller. Er galt als einer der bedeutendsten Autoren …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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  • Naguib — (Arabic: نجيب‎ Najib) is an Arabic, specifically Egyptian, given name and family name. It may refer to the following people: Muhammad Naguib, the first president of Egypt Antonios Naguib, an Egyptian Catholic patriarch David Naguib Pellow, an… …   Wikipedia


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