Journals Higher Education



Published: 01 February 2011

ISBN: 9789774164538

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Bookseller Code (02)

Heart of the Night

Naguib Mahfouz and Translated by Aida Bamia

A Publication of The American University in Cairo Press

A classic Mahfouz story exploring themes of marriage across class lines, spirituality, and the harsh realities of a precarious life.

Jaafar Ibrahim Sayyed al-Rawi, the main character in this most recently translated Mahfouz novel, is guided by his motto, "let life be filled with holy madness to the last breath." He narrates his life story to a friend during one long night in a café in old Cairo. Through a series of bad decisions, he has lost everything: his family, his position in society, and his fortune. A man driven by his passions, he married a beautiful Bedouin nomad for love, and as a consequence pays a punishingly high price.