Naguib Mahfouz was an Egyptian writer and Nobel laureate, who is best known for his novel Miramar. The novel, published in 1967, is set in the coastal town of Alexandria and tells the story of a group of characters who are connected through their relationships and interactions with the central character, Ahmad Abdel-Jawad.
The novel begins with the arrival of Ahmad, a wealthy businessman, to the Miramar Palace hotel in Alexandria. Ahmad is returning to the city after a long absence, and is eager to reconnect with the people and places he left behind. However, as he begins to interact with the other characters in the novel, it becomes clear that his past is not as simple as he thought it was.
Throughout the novel, Mahfouz explores themes of love, loss, and the complexities of human relationships. The characters in Miramar are deeply flawed and often make poor decisions, but they are also capable of great love and loyalty.
One of the most notable aspects of Miramar is Mahfouz's portrayal of the city of Alexandria itself. The city is depicted as a vibrant and cosmopolitan place, full of life and energy. Mahfouz's writing is evocative and poetic, and he uses the city as a metaphor for the characters' own experiences and emotions.
Overall, Miramar is a beautifully written and deeply poignant novel that explores the complexity of human relationships and the power of love. It is a testament to Naguib Mahfouz's talent as a writer, and is a must-read for fans of literature and anyone interested in the human experience.
A young woman, Zohra, is hired to do chores in the pension Miramar, where there are male residents. Naguib Mahfouz is someone who loves his country very much and understands it well. These ones helped me get a bit below the surface of what I was seeing as a non-Arabic speaking touri Bought at the fabulous Diwan bookstore in Zamalek, and read on the train to Alexandria plenty of time as trains are often late in Egypt , this beautifully descriptive book tells the story of a variety of characters who come together in Alexandria a few years after the revolution of 1952. Each of the characters is familiar in any changing society, but here each has their special Egyptian flavour. The narration is tight, as if the author considers it a crime to waste words. Each of the young man have their flaws and troubles. Both quotations from "Analysis of Structuralism and the Multiple Viewpoints in Miramar" by Katharine Swan.
The murder mystery is incidental to all this, just one thread that radiates out from all the movements of the hotel's guests as they vie for Zohra's attentions. Find this and read! Now i am trying to read it in Arabic. Miramar would probably most appeal to those who study literature or social sciences, or who have lived in Alexandria. At the center of Mahfouz's "Miramar" is the peasant girl Zohra, who flees to Alexandria in order to escape the traditionalist mores of her family. What about it appears to be particularly "Middle Eastern"? The quest, however, is seldom successful. But the same is told in the first person by each of the characters. Mahfouz brings these people to life and makes them quite believable despite how strange some of them are.
It's not a time or place in history that particularly captivates me and this book didn't whet my appetite for more. I started reading the novel long ago, and I have just finished it, it was a bit boring for me, as Naguib was retelling the same events but from different points of view I mean the characters, and this is something I don't like as for me I get bored very quickly. Hosni Allam, the bored and restless playboy driving around fast in his car. Can you picture the events depicted here or the sensations of the characters occurring in our own society at any given point in our history? We have the rich boy, ripe in arrogance, who assumes that because she is poor, he could have the girl with a snap of his fingers. Since then, his approach has been eclectic. Zohra has left her family to avoid an arranged marriage to an older man. The novel is sort of a mix of a murder mystery and commentary on the politics in Egypt in the 1960s.
I have now read three books by Mahfouz, and this one is my favorite. With one of them the fellaha falls in love. Each with his own story to tell, each with his eyes upon the fellaha, and each with his own personal adventures and misadventures. He represents a turning phase in Egyptian literature though and should still be appreciated. In Zohra the hotel's guests see the promise of Egypt in modern times, in a willful, intelligent girl who wants to better herself and find a suitable love.
It was one of those revolutions that failed by getting the wrong kind of success and ended up what all such revolutions do — it took power from old elite and distributed it among new opportunists. She is a symbol of Egypt itself- rejecting the old ways, and working hard to educate itself to be self-sufficient. Zohra is the backbone of the novel, the young, beautiful peasant girl who makes the older guests feel young again and who excites the desires of the younger guests. I was always surprised by what was happening and how they reacted. I would have wished for a bit more clarity about exactly when this took place in the 60s, as well as having more details of the backgrounds of the two older men at the Miramar. Yet she is still confident at the end.
Yet he chooses to imbue all of his characters with a language that is considered to be classical literary Arabic as opposed to the colloquial dialects that would be more natural to their stations in life. Zohra is beautiful and all the three young men are attracted to her, and so there are fights and it all ends with a murder. This book is an interesting and revealing character sketch that includes several members of the older generation, who remember fondly the political struggles of bygone days, and several younger men, whose future is uncertain but is probably not bright. Zohra is beautiful and all the three young men are attracted to her, and so there are fights and it all ends with a murder. In his novels, the universal is packaged in the concrete details of local color and specific national setting. Personalities are ingrained in the narrative in such a way that you believe them alive, breathing: killing, hating, making mistakes.
It is the late 1960s and Egypt has had a revolution and new ideas and people are in power. Consulting the publication chronology provided at the back of this guide, locate the period in which the book you have read came out, and discuss what elements there are in the writing style that identify it as belonging to that particular genre. This is set in Egypt and frequently evokes a revolution in that country of which I know little about. The guests at the Pension Miramar an old radical and a young radical, an old aristocrat and a young aristocrat, This is above all a social novel, a cross section of how people lived and experienced their relationships to society in Alexandria in the 1960s; and a political novel, since everything in it is very much affected by the rearrangements of power that were taking place, and by questions of who's gaining, who's losing, how will people survive, or even improve their place in the new order. Does it alter any preconceptions you may have brought to the work for better or for worse? There's a generational gap here as well as the owner, a widow, and two of the guests, two retired political figures, are somewhat trapped in the past and how they arrived at this point. Zohra is a beautiful peasant girl who fled her family to escape an arranged marriage. This book is a page-turner that reads quickly and delivers satisfying psychological insights into the world of Egypt around the mid-1950s.
Miramar : Naguib Mahfouz : Free Download, Borrow, and Streaming : Internet Archive
. Can't wait to discover others by N. Sobering in the morning, Mansour turns himself in to the police for the murder, but the autopsy proves that he is innocent. In a way, we've had similar pseudo-revolutions here in my country and I bet that's the same revolution Libya just had recently. Vanity Fair called him "the greatest writer in one of the most widely understood languages in the world, a storyteller of the first order in any idiom.
Mariana, the old owner of the Pension, a remnant of the formerly dominant Western elite; Amer Wagdi, the once ardent nationalist and socialist; his former foe and erstwhile lover of Mariana, the now dispossessed Tolba Marzuq; the central figure Zohra Salama, the fellaha peasant , a strong , passionate woman determined to move beyond her social status by her own efforts; Sarhan al-Beheiry, a representative of the new class benefitting from the revolution yet greedy for more as underlined both by his pursuit of the "respectable" wife and his involvement in the black market deal which goes disastrously wrong; Hosny A. And thank you all my dear egyptian friends for not laughing at me while i attempt this insanity! Naguib Mahfouz was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1988 and as happens with many Nobel winners, the excitement he created soon faded away. Rumors spread among the boarders that Zohra is a prostitute and Mariana her pimp. The point, I think, of having the revolution as a background is easy to understand: this revolution didn't really effect any fundamental change. Mansur Bahi, intellectual unable to stop running away from relationships and other levels of betrayal.
Safeya sneaks into the pension after the final break-up with Sarhan, causes a scene, and Hosny escorts her away. It makes you reinterpret the same incident and obtain a different perspective each time. There are representatives of both old and new generations — but there are no idealists in the new generation. Zohra beauty attracts Hosny and Sarhan, who are not interested in marriage. How do they affect our ability to act? It's frustrating to read about many of the male characters in this book because they each carry, to varied degrees, some patriarchal ideas on what Zohra should be or do, but I suppose that discomfort is kinda the point.