Friendly Fire, the first collection of short stories from Alaa Al Aswany, acclaimed author of Chicago and The Yacoubian Building, deftly explores the lives o. A review, and links to other information about and reviews of Friendly Fire by Alaa Al Aswany. Friendly Fire. Alaa al Aswany, Author, Humphrey Davies, Translator. Harper Perennial $ (p) ISBN

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Speaking friejdly a hotel beside the Nile, and later in London, he says he is unwilling to give up his clinic, despite being a rarity among Arabic novelists in being able to live from his writing Mahfouz was a government bureaucrat. But if you block your contact with the street, you’re in trouble.

The man on whom the character was based “was a very good student, but was passed over as a policeman because he was from the wrong class”, says Al Aswany. It was made into a hit film in Arabic in aswwny, directed by Marwan Hamed, and an Egyptian television serial last year.

Through characters such as Salah, an Egyptian intellectual in love with all Jewish-American woman, and Shaymaa, a veiled woman who questions the sexual constraints of her upbringing, the novel tackles issues such as extra-marital sex, abortion and antisemitism. Cairo University University of Illinois at Chicago. One said he’d never accept that a veiled woman would have a relationship outside marriage.

Most of the characters have accepted the prevailing system — cowering almost naturally before the powers fiee be — and while Al Aswany describes a few attempts to challenge it, most ultimately fail against the deeply entrenched way things are; several stories end showing how the characters resign themselves to the way things are, in a number of different ways.


This page was last edited on 19 Novemberat He wrote assany weekly literary critique entitled “parenthetic phrase” in the Egyptian newspaper Al-Sha’aband then became responsible for the culture page in the same friencly. As a dentist for 6, cement factory workers in southern Cairo, Al Aswany grasped at the “opportunity to keep contact with a world I’d never see elsewhere”.

His literary works have been translated into 31 languages: Al Aswany friendlu that his success may have given him greater freedom as a writer. Yet Al Aswany remains optimistic. I must keep loyal to them, or I’ll lose everything.

However, Al-Aswany was banned from attending the premiere. Friendly Fire by Alaa Al Aswany. There’s a category of Arabic poetry about homosexual feelings.

Alaa Al Aswany – Wikipedia

The strength of the Muslim Brotherhood, which has a fifth of seats in the people’s assembly, allows the government to pose as a bulwark against Islamism. If you’re young and don’t have hope, you’re pushed to be a criminal or a fanatic.

You don’t have the time or concentration to rebel. The Egyptian novelist Gamal al-Ghitani praised the book as having “enriched the art of the Egyptian novel”, while, for the Lebanese writer and journalist Elias Khoury, it “reinvented the popular Egyptian novel, which had died”.

Friendly Fire

Her uncle was minister of education before the revolution that overthrew the monarchy and brought Gamal Abdel Nasser to power. He went on to pursue a master’s degree in dentistry at the University of Illinois at Chicago in I felt that, faced with a certain injustice, anyone could become dangerous, a terrorist, because he had lost the dream of his life. We’re professors of compromise.


I was a child when Egypt was tolerant. In fact, many intellectuals believe that this work played a crucial role in triggering revolutionary sentiments among the Egyptian people. For Al Aswany, who “waited 20 years to be read”, his sales are a “reward from readers. It exposes a pervasive system of patronage in which mediocrity rises and rebellion has grave costs.

His mother, Zainab, came from an aristocratic family; her uncle was a Pasha and Minister of Education before the Egyptian Revolution of The foodgates of memory opened, came over and swept him away, as if the past were a gigantic genie let out of the bottle. He said, ‘you must keep writing.

Cairo calling

Chicagoa novel set in the city in which the author was educatedwas published in January and his Automobile Club of Egypt was published in English in With friends, he paid for and distributed copies himself.

Retrieved 24 May Yet even now, Al Aswany says: Inspired by a real art-deco block in downtown Cairo where the author had his first dental clinic, The Yacoubian Building is set at the time of the Gulf war. If I compromise, I’ll betray my father. In fact, he had never stopped thinking about her for a single asany. But I do not have control over them. According to Davies, “The stink of sour grapes is all over the Arab world about Alaa’s success.