The Day the Leader Was Killed

Naguib Mahfouz
Translated byMalak Hashem

In this breathtakingly compact novel, written in the mid-1980s, the focus is once again on the generational paradigm featured in the Cairo Trilogy. T

English edition
108 pp.
12.5X20cm
ISBN 9789774246852
For sale only in the Middle East

$14.95

In this breathtakingly compact novel, written in the mid-1980s, the focus is once again on the generational paradigm featured in the Cairo Trilogy. This time, Mahfouz traces the life of a middle-class Cairene family living in the early 1980s under President Sadat. It was an era of transition in Egypt, a time of acute crisis, as everywhere ordinary people were being pushed into the ‘’abyss of Infitah.’’ In the mad rush, there was a sense of an ending, a feeling of panic as the innocent helplessly watched their world rapidly disintegrating. A whole way of life with its age-old traditions and values was simply falling apart, making way for a merciless new materialism in ‘’the kingdom of the corrupt,’’ where survival had indeed to be for the fittest. The novel reaches its climax with the assassination of Sadat on October 6, 1981, an event around which the fictional plot is skillfully woven.

Naguib Mahfouz

Naguib Mahfouz (1911–2006) was born in the crowded Cairo district of Gamaliya. He wrote nearly 40 novel-length works, plus hundreds of short stories and numerous screenplays. He was awarded the Nobel prize for literature in 1988. Kay Heikkinen holds a PhD in Romance Languages and Literatures from Harvard University, where she first became interested in Arabic history, language, and literature. She has taught medieval history and literature as well as Islamic civilization, and currently teaches Arabic at the University of Chicago.  
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