Event Celebrating Naguib Mahfouz's Work - Center for Contemporary Arab Studies | Georgetown University

Join the Center for Contemporary Arab Studies, in collaboration with the Egyptian Embassy in Washington DC, the American University in Cairo, Georgetown University’s Lannan Literary Programs of the Department of English, Georgetown University’s Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies, and the Georgetown University Library to celebrate the life and work of Egyptian author and Nobel Prize-winner Naguib Mahfouz on Wednesday, November 8th, at 7:00 pm in the ICC Auditorium (reception to follow).

Roger Allen, Professor of Arabic Language and Literature at the University of Pennsylvania who has written widely on Arabic literature and was a friend of Mahfouz, and Hosam Aboul-Ela, a translator and professor of English literature at the University of Houston, Texas, will both speak about Naguib Mahfouz’s life and works, and their implications for his society and the global community they enchanted. Short readings from Mahfouz’s works in both the original Arabic and the English translation will be performed.

Naguib Mahfouz was born in Cairo in 1911 and lived there his entire life, writing about the daily lives, struggles, and dreams of the Egyptian people. He is credited with making the novel a popular form of modern Arab literature – producing more than 30 novels, along with numerous short story collections, essays, and regular newspaper columns. His novels and screenplays have been made into some of the most beloved Egyptian films, and his works have been translated into almost thirty languages.

Naguib Mahfouz won the 1980 Nobel Prize for Literature. He remains the only Arab writer to be awarded this honor. Among his most famous works is the Cairo Trilogy (Palace Walk, Palace of Desire, and Sugar Street), a portrayal of an Egyptian merchant family from World War I until the overthrow of King Farouq in 1952 Mahfouz’s death on August 30, 2006, marked the end of a vast career and the death of one of Egypt and the Arab world’s most beloved figures.