Naguib Mahfouz - File Photo
Naguib Mahfouz - File Photo

9 novels announced on Naguib Mahfouz Prize's longlist

Thu, May. 24, 2018
CAIRO – 24 May 2018: The Supreme Council for Culture declared on Wednesday, May 23, the names of nine novels on the longlist of the 2018 Naguib Mahfouz Prize for Novel after 19 years of absence.

The longlist includes "Catch a Martyr" by Adel Obeid, "Shadow's Resurrection" by Moustafa Mounir, "The Tiger" by Serag el-Din Yassin, "The Female Monk and The Sinner" by Mohamed Aiad, "I decided to Leave" by Nourhan Mahmoud, "Life" by Iman al-masri, "A call to the Good Time" by Omar Hussein Sirag, "The last Sultan" by Ola Maher Aid, and "Bridge" by Tamer Shaikhon.

The Supreme Council has declared that the prize’s worth has risen to LE 50,000 for Arab and Egyptian novelists.

In 1999, Mauritanian novelist Moussa Ould Ebnou won the prize, which was worth LE 25,000, for his novel "The Impossible Love".

The Supreme Council awarded many novelists Naguib Mahfouz’s Prize for Novel until 1999.

Mahfouz was born on December 11, 1911, and passed away on August 30, 2006 at the age of 96. He is mainly known for being as one of the first Arabic literature contemporary writers. Every day, Mahfouz would write for the duration of one hour during his 70-year career; he wrote 25 movie scripts, seven plays, 350 short stories and 34 novels. The Egyptian cinema has witnessed over 30 movies that were based on Mahfouz’s novels and literary works.

In 1994, an Islamic extremist attempted to assassinate Mahfouz, who was 82 at the time, due to his controversial novel “Awlad Haretna” (The Children of Gebelawi). The novel spoke about God and the prophets, and creatively explained the philosophy of religion. This incident only directed attention to the novel, which was later deemed as one of the most famous novels in the history of Arabic literature.

The Egyptian government would go on to honor Mahfouz with the Egyptian State Prize twice for his literary works. While the American University in Cairo (AUC) recognized him with a doctorate in 1995; Mahfouz was chosen as an honorary member of the American Academy of Arts and Institute of Arts.
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