From the invention of the camera, photographers, like painters, have sought to portray other people, and early studio photographs, with their highly stylized props, poses, and costumes, offer a beguiling window onto the prevailing fashions, tastes, and attitudes of their time. The portraits in this book, Egyptian studio photos from the mid-nineteenth century to the Second World War, tell such a story, their popularity and art then driven by the burgeoning presence of photo studios across the country. In their rich variety, they offer vivid evidence of the democratization of the image as access to the technology spread from members of Egypt’s royalty to an ever-wider circle of subjects. But, more than that, they freeze time, by capturing human subjects that are no longer there. These portraits, and the studios that created them, evoke haunting fragments of a vanished past and invite us to endless speculation and contemplation. In the age of the selfie, their power to speak to us from the mists of time cannot be overstated. Includes over 200 stunning images, from the work of 81 photographic studios.
This gritty tale of two men’s ill-conceived quest for a better life via the deserts of the Middle East and the cities of Europe is pure storytelling
Two Bedouin men from Egypt’s Western Desert seek to escape poverty through different routes. One—the intellectual, terminally self-doubting, and avowedly autobiographical Hamdi—gets no further than southern Libya’s fly-blown oasis of Sabha, while his cousin—the dashing, irrepressible Phantom Raider—makes it to the fleshpots of Milan.
The backdrop of this darkly comic and unsentimental story of illegal immigration is a brutal Europe and Muammar Gaddafi’s rickety, rhetoric-propped Great State of the Masses, where “the Leader” fantasizes of welding Libyan and Egyptian Bedouin into a new self-serving political force, the Saad-Shin.
Compelling and visceral, with a seductive, muscular irony, The Men Who Swallowed the Sun is an unforgettable novel of two men and their fellow migrants and the extreme marginalization that drives them.
A fascinating, richly illustrated study of the role and significance of ancient statues in Egyptian history and belief
Why do ancient Egyptian statues so often have their noses, hands, or genitals broken? Although the Late Antiquity period appears to have been one of the major moments of large-scale vandalism against pagan monuments, various contexts bear witness to several phases of reuse, modification, or mutilation of statues throughout and after the pharaonic period. Reasons for this range from a desire to erase the memory of specific rulers or individuals for ideological reasons to personal vengeance, war, tomb plundering, and the avoidance of a curse; or simply the reuse of material for construction or the need to ritually “deactivate” and bury old statues, without the added motive of explicit hostility toward the subject in question.
Drawing on the latest scholarship and over 100 carefully selected illustrations, Ancient Egyptian Statues proceeds from a general discussion of the production and meaning of sculptures, and the mechanisms of their destruction, to review the role of ancient statuary in Egyptian history and belief. It then moves on to explore the various means of damage and their significance, and the role of restoration and reuse.
Art historian Simon Connor offers an innovative and lucidly written reflection on beliefs and practices relating to statuary, and images more broadly, in ancient Egypt, showing how statues were regarded as the active manifestations of the entities they represented, and the ways in which they could endure many lives before being finally buried or forgotten.
A comprehensive study of the iron objects found in Tutankhamun’s tomb that include daggers, quivers, arrows, and an elaborately decorated bow case
A century after Howard Carter and Lord Carnarvon’s sensational discovery in 1922 of the virtually intact tomb of Tutankhamun in the Valley of the Kings, the boy-king and his treasures continue to fascinate people all over the world. Although nearly 5,400 objects accompanied the young pharaoh on his journey to the afterlife, many of them have not been investigated in detail.
Iron from Tutankhamun’s Tomb analyzes iron artifacts from the tomb in depth for the first time. This group consists of small iron chisels set into wooden handles, an Eye of Horus amulet, a miniature headrest, and the blade of a richly decorated golden dagger. The most important of these were placed in close proximity to the king’s mummy, emphasizing the high value attributed to this rare material in late Bronze Age Egypt―a time when iron smelting was not yet known in the land of the Nile.
Written by a research team of archaeologists, scientists, and conservators, this comprehensive study explores in fascinating detail the context and meaning of these artifacts, while establishing for the first time that Tutankhamun’s iron came from meteorites. They complete their examination with the results of chemical analyses, offering in the process a rich overall understanding of iron and its significance in ancient Egypt.
International Booker Prize finalist and “one of the Arab world’s most innovative novelists” (Roger Allen) delivers a brilliant retelling of the Muslim wars of conquest in North Africa
The year is 693 and a tense exchange, mediated by an interpreter, takes place between Berber warrior queen al-Kahina and an emissary from the Umayyad General Hassan ibn Nu’man. Her predecessor had been captured and killed by the Umayyad forces some years earlier, but she will go on to defeat them.
The Night Will Have Its Say is a retelling of the Muslim wars of conquest in North Africa during the seventh century CE, narrated from the perspective of the conquered peoples. Written in Ibrahim al-Koni’s unique and enchanting voice, his lyrical and deeply poetic prose speaks to themes that are intensely timely. Through the wars and conflicts of this distant, turbulent era, he addresses the futility of war, the privilege of an elite few at the expense of the many, the destruction of natural habitats and indigenous cultures, and questions about literal and fundamentalist interpretations of religious texts.
Al-Koni’s masterly account of conquest and resistance is both timeless and timely, infused with a sense of disaster and exile—from language, the desert, and homeland.
Cutting-edge research by twenty-four international scholars on female power, agency, health, and literacy in ancient Egypt
There has been considerable scholarship in the last fifty years on the role of ancient Egyptian women in society. With their ability to work outside the home, inherit and dispense of property, initiate divorce, testify in court, and serve in local government, Egyptian women exercised more legal rights and economic independence than their counterparts throughout antiquity. Yet, their agency and autonomy are often downplayed, undermined, or outright ignored. In Women in Ancient Egypt twenty-four international scholars offer a corrective to this view by presenting the latest cutting-edge research on women and gender in ancient Egypt.
Covering the entirety of Egyptian history, from earliest times to Late Antiquity, this volume commences with a thorough study of the earliest written evidence of Egyptian women, both royal and non-royal, before moving on to chapters that deal with various aspects of Egyptian queens, followed by studies on the legal status and economic roles of non-royal women and, finally, on women’s health and body adornment. Within this sweeping chronological range, each study is intensely focused on the evidence recovered from a particular site or a specific time-period. Rather than following a strictly chronological arrangement, the thematic organization of chapters enables readers to discern diachronic patterns of continuity and change within each group of women.
· Clémentine Audouit, Paul Valery University, Montpellier, France
· Anne Austin, University of Missouri, St. Louis, Missouri, USA
· Mariam F. Ayad, The American University in Cairo, Cairo, Egypt
· Romane Betbeze, Université de Genève, Switzerland, and Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes, PSL, France
· Anke Ilona Blöbaum, Saxon Academy of Sciences and Humanities in Leipzig, Leipzig, Germany
· Eva-Maria Engel, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Berlin, Germany
· Renate Fellinger, University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK
· Kathrin Gabler, University of Basel, Basel, Switzerland
· Rahel Glanzmann, independent scholar, Basel, Switzerland.
· Izold Guegan, Swansea University, UK, and Sorbonne University, Paris, France
· Fayza Haikal, The American University in Cairo, Cairo, Egypt
· Janet H. Johnson, Oriental Institute, University of Chicago, Chicago, Il, USA
· Katarzyna Kapiec, Institute of the Mediterranean and Oriental Cultures of the Polish Academy of Sciences, Warsaw, Poland
· Susan Anne Kelly, Macquarie University Sydney, Sydney, Australia
· AnneMarie Luijendijk, Princeton University, Princeton, New Jersey, USA
· Suzanne Onstine, University of Memphis, Memphis, Tennessee, USA
· José Ramón Pérez-Accino Picatoste, Facultad de Geografía e Historia, Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Madrid, Spain
· Tara Sewell-Lasater, University of Houston, Houston, Texas, USA
· Yasmin El Shazly, American Research Center in Egypt, Cairo, Egypt
· Reinert Skumsnes, Centre for Gender Research, University of Oslo, Oslo, Norway
· Isabel Stünkel, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, New York, USA
· Inmaculada Vivas Sainz, National Distance Education University), Madrid, Spain
· Hana Vymazalová, Czech Institute of Egyptology, Faculty of Arts, Charles University, Prague, Czeck Republic
· Jacquelyn Williamson, George Mason University, Fairfax, Viriginia, USA
· Annik Wüthrich, Austrian Academy of Sciences, Austrian Archaeological Institute, Vienna, Austria
An introduction to the geology of Egypt and its influence on ancient Egyptian culture
While much is known about Egypt’s towering pyramids, mighty obelisks, and extraordinary works of art, less is known about the role played by Egypt’s geological history in the formation of pharaonic culture’s artistic and architectural legacy. The fertile soils that lined the Nile Valley meant that the people of Egypt were able to live well off the land. Yet what allowed ancient Egypt to stand apart from other early civilizations was its access to the vast range of natural resources that lay beyond the Nile floodplain.
In this engagingly written book, Colin Reader invites readers to explore the influence of geology and landscape on the development of the cultures of ancient Egypt. After describing today’s Egyptian landscape and introducing key elements of the ancient Egyptian worldview, he provides a basic geological toolkit to address issues such as geological time and major earth-forming processes. The developments that gave the geology of Egypt its distinct character are explored, including the uplifting of mountains along the Red Sea coast, the evolution of the Nile river, and the formation of the vast desert areas beyond the Nile Valley. As the story unfolds, elements of Egypt’s archaeology are introduced, together with discussions of mining and quarrying, construction in stone, and the ways in which the country’s rich geological heritage allowed the culture of ancient Egypt to evolve.
Ideal for non-specialists and specialists alike, and supported with over one hundred illustrations, A Gift of Geology takes the reader on a fascinating journey into Egypt’s geological landscape and its relationship to the marvels of pharaonic culture.
An authoritative account of the Coptic Papacy in Egypt from the coming of Islam to the onset of the Ottoman era, by a leading religious studies scholar, new in paperback
In Volume 1 of this series, Stephen Davis contended that the themes of “apostolicity, martyrdom, monastic patronage, and theological resistance” were determinative for the cultural construction of Egyptian church leadership in late antiquity. This second volume shows that the medieval Coptic popes (641–1517 CE) were regularly portrayed as standing in continuity with their saintly predecessors; however, at the same time, they were active in creating something new, the Coptic Orthodox Church, a community that struggled to preserve a distinctive life and witness within the new Islamic world order. Building on recent advances in the study of sources for Coptic church history, the present volume aims to show how portrayals of the medieval popes provide a window into the religious and social life of their community.
An authoritative history of the Coptic Papacy from the Ottoman era to the present day, new in paperback
This third and final volume of The Popes of Egypt series spans the five centuries from the arrival of the Ottomans in 1517 to the present era. Hardly any scholarly work has been written about the Copts during the Ottoman period. Using court, financial, and building records, as well as archives from the Coptic Orthodox Patriarchate and monasteries, Magdi Guirguis has reconstructed the authority of the popes and the organization of the Coptic community during this time. He reveals that the popes held complete authority over their flock at the beginning of the Ottoman rule, deciding over questions ranging from marriage and concubines to civil disputes. As the fortunes of Coptic notables rose, they gradually took over the pope’s role and it was not until the time of Muhammad Ali that the popes regained their former authority.
In the second part of the book, Nelly van Doorn-Harder analyzes how with the dawning of the modern era in the nineteenth century, the leadership style of the Coptic popes necessarily changed drastically. As Egypt’s social, political, and religious landscape underwent dramatic changes, the Coptic Church experienced a virtual renaissance, and expanded from a local to a global institution. Furthermore she addresses the political, religious, and cultural issues faced by the patriarchs while leading the Coptic community into the twenty-first century.
The dramatic story behind the 3,200-year-old colossal Grand Egyptian Museum Ramesses statue
King Ramesses II ruled Egypt for an extraordinary sixty-six years (1279–1213 BC) during the Nineteenth Dynasty. A great warrior and lavish builder, he fathered dozens of children and is widely regarded as the most celebrated and powerful pharaoh of the New Kingdom.
This wonderfully clear, engaging book recounts the dramatic history of the famed red granite colossal statue of Ramesses II now residing in Egypt’s Grand Egyptian Museum. One of the biggest statues ever made and part of the urban landscape of modern Cairo, the statue lent its name to Ramses Square and the city’s mainline train station, and was so much a symbol of Cairo that it featured in countless Egyptian films. Susanna Thomas recounts the full history of the statue’s creation and installation in the Great Temple of Ptah at Memphis during the reign of Ramesses II, its reuse by Ramesses IV, and the later history of the statue during the Greco-Roman and Islamic Periods.
The book also provides an overview of how statues were made in ancient Egypt and includes a brief discussion of the statue cults of Ramesses II, kingship, temples, and the expansion of the New Kingdom capital city of Memphis and its temples. The final section covers the history of the statue since its rediscovery and subsequent rescue in the mid-nineteenth century until its installation in the entrance hall of the Grand Egyptian Museum in Giza.
Written by a New Kingdom specialist and curatorial expert and illustrated with over 130 images, Ramesses, Beloved by Ptah tells the fascinating story of this magnificent statue within the wider context of statue cults and the reign of Ramesses II, and its subsequent rescue and restoration in modern times.
A wide-ranging, multi-disciplinary collection of essays that decenter, critique, and problematize predominant notions of the meaning of mortality for human creativity
This issue of Alif explores the ways in which humans have come to confront their mortality across time and space. Contributions question the nature of loss, grief, and the possibility of an afterlife. Is death only an interlude? Perhaps simply the end? How have people used literature and the arts to conceptualize its relentless presence in our existence?
The articles in this issue decenter, critique, and problematize predominant notions of the meaning of mortality for human creativity. They provide a wide scope of responses to mortality, anthropologically, philosophically, and psychologically. They shed light on different cultural receptions of loss, annihilation, and mortality, ranging from India to Yemen, Palestine to Iraq, the Island of Lampedusa to the war-ravished city of Beirut, among many other locales. Death is dealt with in an intimate fashion through the exploration and reinterpretation of modern and classical elegiac poetry, children’s picturebooks, fictional accounts of war, grief, and displacement, and dramatic treatments of dying and the afterlife.
Contributors: Hajjaj Abu Jabr, Egyptian Academy of Arts, Cairo, Egypt Karam AbuSehly, Beni-Suef University, Beni Suef, Egypt Hala Amin, Beni-Suef University, Beni Suef, Egypt Shaimaa El-Ateek, Imam Mohammad Ibn Saud Islamic University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia Mohamed Birairi, Beni-Suef University, Beni-Suef, Egypt, and American University in Cairo, Cairo, Egypt Elliott Colla, Georgetown University, Washington, DC, USA Saeed Elmasry, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt Shaimaa Gohar, Ain Shams University, Cairo, Egypt Walid El Khachab, York University, Toronto, Canada Yasmine Motawy, American University in Cairo, Cairo, Egypt Dani Nassif, University of Münster, Münster, Germany Andrea Maria Negri, Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich, Munich, Germany Marwa Ramadan, Zagazig University, Zagazig, Egypt Caroline Rooney, University of Kent, Kent, United Kingdom Tania Al Saadi, Stockholm University, Stockholm, Sweden May Telmissany, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Canada Shahla Ujayli, American University of Madaba, Madaba, Jordan
A multi-faceted account of Egyptian economic development by nineteen internationally recognized authorities and the critical challenges the economy is likely to face in the next twenty years
The Egyptian Economy in the Twenty-first Century addresses the question of why Egypt, despite possessing a plethora of assets—such as a fertile agriculture, a strategic geographic location, oil and gas deposits, innumerable tourist sites, a labor force prized by regional countries, and a diaspora that remits large amounts of funds—has seldom performed to its economic potential during the last sixty years. Indeed, economic weakness created political weakness, and often exposed the country to foreign diktats. What should the country do to change this state of affairs?
Nineteen internationally recognized authorities on the Egyptian economy discuss the critical challenges that the Egyptian economy is likely to face in the next two to three decades, challenges which must be overcome in order to improve the life of Egypt’s citizens and to protect the country from external pressures. Their analyses cover population and employment; development strategies; principal macroeconomic issues; development of a digital economy; fiscal and monetary matters; the external sector; poverty and income distribution; the enterprise structure; higher education; water availability; urbanization; institutional performance; and many others.
Contributors: – Gouda Abdel Khalek, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt – Khaled M. Abu-Zeid, Regional Water Resources, CEDARE (Center for Environment and Development for the Arab Region and Europe), Cairo, Egypt. – Fatma El Ashmawy, World Bank. – Ragui Assaad, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul, Minnesota, USA – Izak Atiyas,Economic Research Forum, Cairo, Egypt. – Marwa Biltagy, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt. – Lahcen Bounader, International Monetary Fund. – Ishac Diwan, École Normale Supérieure, Paris, France. – Ahmed Ghoneim, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt. – Khalid Ikram, Washington DC, USA. – Karima Korayem, al-Azhar University, Cairo, Egypt. – Heba el-Laithy, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt. – Noha el-Mikawy, Ford Foundation, Middle East and North Africa, Cairo, Egypt. – Mohamed Mohieddin, Menoufia University, Menoufia, Egypt. – Heba Nassar, Cairo University, Cairo, Egypt. – Osman Mohamed Osman, Cairo, Egypt. – Noha Razek, University of Regina, Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada. – David Sims, Cairo, Egypt. – John Waterbury, Princeton, New Jersey.
Volume one of Taha Hussein’s classic work, unabridged, and supported with robust comprehension, interpretation, and analytical exercises, for advanced learners of Arabic
Taha Hussein’s autobiographical novel The Days helped usher in the era of modern Arabic writing and remains one of the most influential and best-known works of Arabic literature. With this guided study, the complete first volume of the novel is accessible to students of Arabic in a way never previously available. While Arabic literature provides a vast body of texts as a window into diverse cultures and eras, the lack of useful teaching material has often forced teachers to spend much of their time creating supplemental material, rather than focusing on the exploration of literary art and themes. This study will walk Arabic students through the unabridged novel in manageable lessons, supported with robust comprehension, interpretation, and analytical exercises, focusing on the historical context, elements of literature, and social themes. This book is organized to mirror the way an experienced teacher of Arabic literature would structure the lessons, and is thus perfectly suited as a textbook for an advanced Arabic or Arabic literature class, or as an independent study package for learners.
An innovative account of the life of Tutankhamun, the rediscovery of his existence, and the enduring impact of the finding of his tomb, by leading Egyptologist Aidan Dodson
The spectacular discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb in 1922 has given him an afterlife that has all but eclipsed the young king’s real career. This authoritative yet accessible book tells the story of Tutankhamun, from his own lifetime in the fourteenth century BC, down to modern times. It explores the various theories as to his parentage, his role in the ‘counter-reformation’ that followed the religious revolution of Akhenaten, and his premature death. It also looks at the monuments built during the king’s reign, his key officials, and the arrangements made for his funeral.
Moving forward in time, Tutankhamun, King of Egypt considers the way in which Tutankhamun was written out of official history. The story is then picked up again in the early nineteenth century AD when, with the first decipherment of hieroglyphs, Tutankhamun’s name could once again be read, and the problem of his place in history considered by Egyptologists. Aidan Dodson traces possible solutions through the decades as more and more data came to light, culminating in the discovery of the king’s tomb. Yet, dazzling as that discovery was, many matters regarding Tutankhamun remain obscure today, even with the aid of genetic data. Dodson also looks at how the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb brought about the first of many outbreaks of “Tut-mania,” and explores some of its manifestations.
Richly illustrated in full color throughout, this fascinating book by a leading Egyptologist will be essential reading for anyone interested in the life and enduring legacy of ancient Egypt’s most famous king.
A “spare, well-crafted and compelling” (Samah Selim) novel in which a man in Algiers disappears without trace and the detective in search of him finds more than he expected, winner of the Naguib Mahfouz Medal for Literature
In Rouiba, a nondescript suburb of Algiers, an unnamed man with a troubled past escapes his everyday life to find himself caring for an old man with dementia. When the man dies, the carer disappears into thin air. A police detective is assigned to investigate the circumstances of the old man’s demise and to track down the caretaker, only to find that the unnamed man cannot be identified—that there is no trace of Mr. Nobody. The officer’s search leads him to those whose paths once crossed Mr. Nobody’s. In each of them he finds a reflection of the man he is looking for.
A raw, lyrical portrait of life on the margins in contemporary Algiers, this haunting noir captures an underworld of police informers, shady imams, bootleg beer traders, and grave robbers, and reverberates with echoes of Algeria’s violent past.
An examination of the history and waning culture of zar in Egypt, and the world in which Muslim women negotiate relations with spirits
Zar is both a possessing spirit and a set of reconciliation rites between the spirits and their human hosts: living in a parallel yet invisible world, the capricious spirits manifest their anger by causing ailments for their hosts, which require ritual reconciliation, a private sacrificial rite practiced routinely by the afflicted devotees. Originally spread from Ethiopia to the Red Sea and the Arabian Gulf through the nineteenth-century slave trade, in Egypt zar has incorporated elements from popular Islamic Sufi practices, including devotion to Christian and Muslim saints. The ceremonies initiate devotees—the majority of whom are Muslim women—into a community centered on a cult leader, a membership that provides them with moral orientation, social support, and a sense of belonging. Practicing zar rituals, dancing to zar songs, and experiencing trance restore their well-being, which had been compromised by gender asymmetry and globalization.
This new ethnographic study of zar in Egypt is based on the author’s two years of multi-sited fieldwork and firsthand knowledge as a participant, and her collection and analysis of more than three hundred zar songs, allowing her to access levels of meaning that had previously been overlooked. The result is a comprehensive and accessible exposition of the history, culture, and waning practice of zar in a modernizing world.