The Dreams

Naguib Mahfouz
Translated byRaymond Stock

In his shortest short stories, the Egyptian Nobel literature laureate reduced the fictional form to its most essential level, while retaining his just

English edition
144 pp.
13.5X21cm
ISBN 9789774166044
For sale only in the Middle East

$14.95

In his shortest short stories, the Egyptian Nobel literature laureate reduced the fictional form to its most essential level, while retaining his justifiably famous mastery of the storytelling art. A man finds that all the streets in his neighborhood have turned into a circus—but his joy at the sight changes to anger when he sees he cannot escape it anywhere, even in his own home. A group of lifelong friends meet to trade jokes in a familiar alley—only to face a sudden, deadly flood that echoes the revenge taken by an ancient Egyptian queen upon the men who murdered her husband. A girl from the dreamer’s childhood flies with him from his native lane on a cart drawn by a winged horse, to become a star in the firmament above the Great Pyramid. Such is the stuff of Naguib Mahfouz’s The Dreams—his only major work after a knife attack by a religious fanatic in 1994 left him unable to write for several years. First serialized in a Cairo magazine, The Dreams are a unique and haunting mixture of the deceptively quotidian, the seductively lyrical, and the savagely nightmarish—the richly condensed sum of more than nine decades of artistic genius and everyday experience.

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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