Naguib Mahfouz: The Pursuit of Meaning

Naguib Mahfouz: The Pursuit of Meaning

Naguib Mahfouz: The Pursuit of Meaning

Naguib Mahfouz: The Pursuit of Meaning

Synopsis

A comprehensive and up-to-date introduction to the winner of the 1988 Nobel Prize for Literature. Included is a full biography and systematic analysis of the writer's works.

Excerpt

A new book on Naguib Mahfouz has long been overdue. All existing studies, whether in Arabic or English, were written at a time when the novelist was still at the height of his energy and inventiveness. Thus the last twenty-odd years of his creative life (specifically since the late 1960s) which saw his imagination take new turnings and some of his most important works written have remained largely unresearched and the link unestablished between the two halves of his œuvre. The last two decades have also seen a steady increase in the realization of the originality and human significance of Mahfouz's work in the West-a realization which culminated in the award of the Nobel Prize for literature to the author in 1988. Today, with virtually half his novels in English translation alone, several more currently under contract, and with translations being published on a wide commercial scale as opposed to the narrow semi-academic circulation of a few years ago, the need for a fresh and thorough evaluation of the novelist's achievement (and one which addresses itself as much to the general reader as to the specialist Arabist) is all too apparent. This book, it is hoped, will be seen as an endeavour in that direction.

Critics have tended to classify Mahfouz's work into three chronological phases (historical/romantic, realistic/naturalistic and modernist/experimental), and more recently they have added a fourth, usually labelled 'the phase of indigenous or traditional form' (maralat al-shakl al-al aw al-turath)-the products of which I will choose to refer to subsequently in this book as 'the episodic novels'. This approach may have served a purpose while the author's development was still an ongoing

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.