A woman disappears without a trace. The police commissioner investigating the case enquires: was she of dubious morals, was she the rebellious sort? Nobody understands how a woman could simply walk away from it all, leaving husband and home behind. After all, in the 'kingdom of oil' where 'His Majesty' reigns supreme, no woman has ever dared disobey the command of men. When she finally reappears there is a blurring of the distinctions between the men in her life. She leaves one to become the wife of another, and when she eventually returns to her first husband, she finds he has taken a new wife. In many ways, to her all men are one and the same … In this rich novel El Saadawi dares anew to confront major issues and questions surrounding a woman's role and position in a repressive, patriarchal order. 'More than any other woman, Saadawi has come to embody the trials of Arab feminism.' San Francisco Chronicle 'Egypt's foremost feminist writer confronts the role of women in Muslim society ... Saadawi writes beautifully and in abundant and evocative physical detail of an Egypt that remains closely tied to the land and to a way of life that in many respects has not changed for centuries.' Publishers Weekly
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About the Author
Nawal El Saadawi is an internationally-renowned Egyptian writer and feminist. Her book Woman and Sex, published in 1972, dealt openly with subjects considered taboo. Several of her novels have been translated into English. She is currently Distinguished Visiting Professor at Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia.