Voices from the Other World

Ancient Egyptian Tales

Naguib Mahfouz
Translated byRaymond Stock

The forces of law and order disturb a district’s too-perfect peace at the dawn of Egyptian civilization. A wise and popular pharaoh is betrayed by h

English edition
96 pp.
12.5X20cm
ISBN 9789774160295
For sale only in the Middle East

$14.95

The forces of law and order disturb a district’s too-perfect peace at the dawn of Egyptian civilization. A wise and popular pharaoh is betrayed by his own son, and by his dearest friends—then makes a most peculiar decision. A mummy returns to life after three thousand years, to confront the arrogant new race that now rules the land. A favored prince flees to a faraway country when the king dies suddenly, leaving his true love behind—only to come back to question her about their forty lost years. A famous young writer, composer of a legendary epic of Pharaoh’s greatest battle with the Hittites, is carried off without warning by a mysterious disease—then speaks to us in this life from beyond the veil of death. Such are the tales that make up this volume of five masterly stories by the young Naguib Mahfouz, all inspired by the Egypt of the pharaohs. Like three novels set in ancient times that he published early in his career, and two more with pharaonic themes that he produced four decades later, these stories reveal his wide reading of Egypt’s (and the world’s) oldest history and literature. All of these gems, however, are very much his own creations. Their voices speak with the familiar genius of Egypt’s greatest modern writer—though they call from a very different world than the one for which he is best known.

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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