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Egypt's Culture WarsPolitics and Practice$
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Samia Mehrez

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9789774163746

Published to Cairo Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5743/cairo/9789774163746.001.0001

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The big one The intellectual and the political in Modern Egyptian Literature

The big one The intellectual and the political in Modern Egyptian Literature

(p.58) 3 The big one The intellectual and the political in Modern Egyptian Literature
Egypt's Culture Wars

Samia Mehrez

American University in Cairo Press

This chapter traces the development of the relationship between the intellectual and the political fields in Egypt since the post-1960s through their representation in Egyptian literary texts from the 1960s to the present. It focuses specifically on two examples: Al–Zayni Barakat by Gamal al–Ghitani and Maqtal al–rajul al–kabir (The Assassination of the Big Man) by Ibrahim Issa. Whereas Al–Zayni is written very early on in al–Ghitani's appearance within the literary field, Maqtal a–rajul alkabir is written after some 15 years in Ibrahim Issa's career as a journalist and creative writer. Not only do the texts reflect different historical junctures between the intellectual and the political in Egypt but they equally bespeak the respective experiences of the two writers as actors within the literary field, as well as their understanding of their relationship with the political one.

Keywords:   Al–Zayni, Gamal al–Ghitani, Ibrahim Issa, Egypt, Al–Akhbar

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