Sunday, December 10, 2006

Gordimer on Mahfouz

Nadine Gordimer was in Cairo this week to deliver the first Naguib Mahfouz Memorial Lecture. El-Ahram printed the text of her lecture. She summons the works and ideas of Proust, Camus, Harold Pinter, Milosz, Conrad, Primo Levi, Kafka, and Kundera to address the responsibilities of the writer, and how Mahfouz in particular met his head on. Go here for the entire thing.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I went to that lecture last week. The lecture itself was good but Gordimer really bombed the Q&A session, so to speak. Maybe it was unfair to her, but all the questions people asked her were so completely arabocentric and had very little to do with her work or Mahfouz's.

The audience seemed really disappointed that the only two contemporary "Egyptian" writers she could name were Elias Khoury and Mahmoud Darwish, and she refused to allow an analogy between South African apartheid and the treatment of Palestinians by Israelis.


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