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Children of the Alley
     

Children of the Alley

5.0 4
by Naguib Mahfouz, Peter Theroux (Translator), Najib Mahfuz
 

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The tumultuous alley of this rich and intricate novel (first published in Arabic in 1959) is inhabited by a delightful Egyptian family, but is also the setting for a second, hidden, and more daring narrative: the spiritual history of humankind. The men and women of a modern Cairo neighborood unwittingly reenact the lives of their holy ancestors

Overview

The tumultuous alley of this rich and intricate novel (first published in Arabic in 1959) is inhabited by a delightful Egyptian family, but is also the setting for a second, hidden, and more daring narrative: the spiritual history of humankind. The men and women of a modern Cairo neighborood unwittingly reenact the lives of their holy ancestors: from the feudal lord who disowns one son for diabolical pride and puts another to the test, to the savior of a succeeding generation who frees his people from bondage. This powerful novel confirms again the richness and variety of Mahfouz's storytelling and his status as "the single most important writer in modern Arabic literature" (Newsweek).

From the eBook edition.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Immensely entertaining and deeply serious." --Chicago Tribune

"An ambitious fable that attempts to embrace within its pages not merely the world of the Middle East but that of the world itself." --Washington Post Book World

"A powerful allegory of human suffering and striving." --New York Times

"A remakable literary feat." --Dallas Morning News

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780385264730
Publisher:
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date:
10/28/1996
Pages:
464
Sales rank:
449,505
Product dimensions:
5.18(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.97(d)

Meet the Author

Naguib Mahfouz was born in Cairo in 1911 and began writing when he was seventeen. His nearly forty novels and hundreds of short stories range from re-imaginings of ancient myths to subtle commentaries on contemporary Egyptian politics and culture. Of his many works, most famous is The Cairo Trilogy, consisting of Palace Walk (1956), Palace of Desire (1957), and Sugar Street (1957), which focuses on a Cairo family through three generations, from 1917 until 1952. In 1988, he was the first writer in Arabic to be awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. He died in August 2006.

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Children of the Alley 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is great book from a great writer. After Kazanzakis tragedies, based on religious stories like "Christ Crossified", Naguib Mahfouz rewrite the religious history of mankind in an Egyptian setting. He showes that human nature will never change no matter what religion says. There are three major monotheistic religions in addition of atheistic old ones but our lives never changed. The world is still full of pain, suffering, killing, immoralities, hatered, injustice and predojices. Even we dispense of religion and God and take up science as our guiding star, still no chang happend and we still unhappy and discontent as ever. Our problem is due to our moral composition of our character that contains god and evil amalgmated together. The children of our allyes is a story about God, Adam, Moses, Christ, Mohammad and modern science depicted as a big family spaning over many generations. The book is a masterpiece of litrature yet very easy-read and laced with philosophy and the auther's take on our tragicomedy that we have to perform. I highly recommend this book and give it five stars.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
this book is really amazing. the story is really well written. it's worth reading.I believe Naguib Mahfouz received the Nobel prize for this book. I hope you enjoy it as i did.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is ostensibly the story of a neighborhood in Cairo over several generations, but it is really a fable about the development of the Abrahamic religions and the rise of modernity. It is not an optimistic work, but it is honest and vibrant. The author got into a lot of trouble for this book, but I think it will survive his persecutors by many, many years. The translation is superb.