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Fb2 Before the Throne (Modern Arabic Novels (Hardcover)) ePub

by Naguib Mahfouz,Raymond Stock

Category: Genre Fiction
Subcategory: Fiction
Author: Naguib Mahfouz,Raymond Stock
ISBN: 9774162919
ISBN13: 978-9774162916
Language: English
Publisher: The American University in Cairo Press; 1 edition (November 1, 2009)
Pages: 163
Fb2 eBook: 1945 kb
ePub eBook: 1776 kb
Digital formats: rtf mbr lrf lit

In Naguib Mahfouz's suspenseful novel a bitter and ambitious nihilist, a beautiful and . Translated from the Arabic by Raymond Stock. History & Fiction.

In Naguib Mahfouz's suspenseful novel a bitter and ambitious nihilist, a beautiful and impoverished student, and a corrupt official engage in a doomed ménage à trois. Cairo of the 1930s is a place of vast social and economic inequities. Before the Throne calls forth a parade of those who have shaped the modern nation of Egypt-from the ruler who first unified Egypt in 3000 BC to Anwar Sadat, the president assassinated by religious extremists in 1981, and including figures as various as the famous pharaoh Ramesses II and the medieval vizier Qaraqush.

Naguib Mahfouz (1911 - 2006) was born in the Cairo district of Gamaliya. Raymond Stock, with a P. He graduated in philosophy from King Fuad University in 1934, and went on to write nearly forty novel-length works, plus hundreds of short stories and numerous screenplays. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1988. He is the translator of numerous works by Mahfouz, most recently Dreams of Departure (AUC Press, 2007). Country of Publication.

Discover new books on Goodreads Naguib Mahfouz, Raymond Stock (Translator).

Discover new books on Goodreads. See if your friends have read any of Raymond Stock's books. Raymond Stock’s Followers. None yet. Raymond Stock. Naguib Mahfouz, Raymond Stock (Translator).

Naguib Mahfouz (1911–2006) was born in the crowded Cairo district of Gamaliya. He is the translator of numerous works by Mahfouz, most recently Before the Throne (2009). He wrote nearly 40 novel-length works, plus hundreds of short stories and numerous screenplays. His most recent works to appear in English translation are Before the Throne and The Mirage (both AUC Press, 2009).

Naguib Mahfouz Translated byRaymond Stock. In this rich and intricate novel, Naguib Mahfouz guides us through the history of an alley whose denizens-some fearsome, most fearful, a few fearless-are all the descendants of one man, Gabalawi, who now keeps himself hidden away in the mansion at the top of the alley.

Before the Throne calls forth a parade of those who have shaped the modern nation of Egypt-from the ruler who first unified Egypt in 3000 BC to Anwar Sadat .

Before the Throne calls forth a parade of those who have shaped the modern nation of Egypt-from the ruler who first unified Egypt in 3000 BC to Anwar Sadat, the president assassinated by religious extremists in 1981, and including figures as various as the famous pharaoh Ramesses II and the medieval vizier Qaraqush. As they defend their decisions under questioning by Osiris, Isis, and Horus, those who acted for the nation’s good are honored with immortality in paradise while those who failed to protect it are condemned either to the inferno or to the place of insignificance.

Naguib Mahfouz is the most prominent author of Arabic fiction published in English today. He was born in Cairo in 1911 and began writing when he was seventeen. Mahfouz reaches back thousands of years to bring us tales from his homeland's majestic early history - tales of the Egyptian nobility and of war, star-crossed love, and the divine rule of the pharoahs.

Author: Naguib Mahfouz. Cairo Modern: An Arabic Novel.

In this extraordinary drama-in-dialogue, Naguib Mahfouz reveals his love for all of Egypt’s extensive history―and his deep knowledge of it. In Before the Throne, he summons nearly sixty of Egypt’s rulers to the afterlife Court of Osiris, from a king who unified Egypt for the first time, around 3000 BC, to a president assassinated by religious extremists in 1981. He includes names as familiar as the pharaoh Ramesses II and as obscure as the medieval vizier Qaraqush. Defending their behavior before the divine tribunal, those who acted for the nation’s good are honored with immortality, but those who failed to protect it leave the gilded hall of eternal justice with a very different verdict. Full of Mahfouz’s unique insight into his country’s timeless qualities, this controversial work skillfully traces five thousand years of Egypt’s past as it flows into the present, through the mind of its most acclaimed author.
Comments to eBook Before the Throne (Modern Arabic Novels (Hardcover))
Vetibert
Naguib Mahfouz is the Shakespeare of the Arab world; Mahfouz is their Homer, their Cervantes. Everything he has written is worth 2 reads, and Before the Throne is perhaps the greatest of all his world
great ant
Twenty-five years after Nobel Prize-winner Naguib Mahfouz wrote this novel, it has been released in English by the University of Cairo Press. An unusual book, it is more a catalog of all the rulers of Egypt since the First Kingdom than a novel in the traditional sense. Each ruler has been summoned to appear for his own trial at the celestial Hall of Justice, where Osiris reposes on his golden throne, with Isis and Horus flanking him. Each ruler must argue his own case, after which the gods and the other Immortals deliberate and assign him to the place where he will spend his afterlife--Paradise, the Inferno, or the Place of Insignificance, between the two, neither Heaven nor Hell.

The first trial is for King Menes, the mightiest monarch of the First Dynasty, who subdued Libya and joined Upper and Lower Egypt. As he presents his case, his judges counter his positive presentation with other facts he has ignored. One hundred thousand Libyans died, and two hundred thousand Egyptians from the North and South Kingdoms died. As the various kings present their cases, it is Isis who is usually the peacemaker, offering reasons to justify the kings' actions enough to enable them to sit with the Immortals.

In short sections averaging between two and five pages, the rulers are presented chronologically from the earliest of Egyptian history through the trial of Anwar Sadat. As the trials move forward, the reader perceives subtle changes--from the early kings, who are are fierce warriors and builders, to later kings who begin to show more sympathetic treatment of their subjects. At the halfway point in the novel, Thoth announces that the Egypt of the gods, pyramids, temples has come to an end, and Egypt is ruled henceforth by non-Egyptians. Persian kings seize the throne. The Romans arrive, bringing Christianity; sectarian battles erupt between the Egyptian church and that of Byzantium; and Islam sweeps the country.

Eventually, the chronology reaches the twentieth century, with Egypt's colonial rule by the British, and finally, the administrations of Gamal Abdel Nasser and Muhammad Anwar al-Sadat. Nasser comes under particularly hostile argument during his trial by the Immortals because he was "heedless of liberty and human rights." At Sadat's trial, one former ruler among the Immortals accuses him: "You wanted democratic rule in which the leaders have dictatorial authority."

More a catalog than a novel, Before the Throne provides fascinating research, but there are no dates included, and most of the rulers will be unfamiliar to western readers. Mahfouz's very short summaries of these rulers make the rulers difficult to distinguish from each other, and the threads uniting the earliest Kingdoms of Egyptian history--the time of the pyramids--with modern times are not strong enough to sustain a sense of thematic development. Ultimately, Mahfouz tells his audience the lessons he wants them to glean from the novel. Akhenaten, for example, advises the Egyptians "to hold to the worship of the One God." Menes admonishes them to "Be zealous for the unity of the land and the people." Khufu declares that "Egypt must believe in labor." In conclusion, Anwat Sadat adds that the goal should be "civilization and peace." Mary Whipple

The Cairo Trilogy: Palace Walk, Palace of Desire, Sugar Street (Everyman's Library)
Akhenaten: Dweller in Truth A Novel
The Day the Leader Was Killed
Karnak Café
The Mirage: A Modern Arabic Novel (Modern Arabic Novels)
Shakanos
In this original `After Life', N. Mahfouz calls all main Egyptian rulers (also Nasser and Sadat) before a divine Court of Justice, for `over the threshold of death - like a shadow that clings to them - a record of all their acts and desires (is) embodied on their naked forms.'
The verdict of the Court will tell the rulers their fate for eternity: a seat among the Immortals, Purgatory, Hell or the Abode of the Everlasting for a new trial.

The lives of the rulers, on an international level, are stories of war and peace, freedom and slavery; independence, territorial integrity and invasions; colonial rule, dominion and revolts.
Nationally, they were responsible for famine or prosperity for all; corruption, bribes or justice; law, order, security, freedom (of speech) or tyranny; true worship or phony religious facades; conspiracies, assassinations or true leadership.
Individually, they were pharaohs, queens, governors and priests confronted with the deprived and the wretched.
There are tales of debauchery and drinking, but also of `appetite for life' (Ramesses II had
three hundred children), of darkness of ignorance or light of knowledge, of education and waste of money.

Governors and priests. Revolution and the downtrodden
Independent governors `ruled autocratically, imposing tyrannical taxes upon their inhabitants, The priests made common cause with the governors, eager to preserve their temple estates and so permitted them every form of evil through their fraudulent religious edicts. They paid no mind to the laments of the deprived and promised that their lot would be better in the world to come.'
We, the peasants, the artisans and the fishermen, `have endured agonies beyond what any human can bear, When our ferocious anger was raised against the rottenness of oppression and darkness our revolt was called chaos, and we were called mere thieves. Yet it was nothing but a revolution against despotism.'

National and international policies (how relevant!)
Nationally, the problem was mostly `one of bread, not of God.'
`We felt it better to educate a peasant than to throw a temple. Building pyramids or waging wars is wasting money.'
`Trade relations would do more than invasions to protect our borders. The sword achieved in a few years what words had failed to do in generations.'

These short comments on Egyptian rulers contain in a nutshell some of the main stories of N. Mahfouz's outstanding works. However, I do not recommend this book as a first introduction to his work, because it is only based on Egyptian history.

Highly recommended to all fans of N. Mahfouz and lovers of world literature.
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