The Automobile Club of Egypt

Alaa Al Aswany

Verlag: Random House India, 2015
ISBN 10: 8184007205 / ISBN 13: 9788184007206
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Beschreibung:

Abd el-Aziz Gaafar, formerly a well-respected landowner now in the grip of penury, moves his family to Cairo and takes on menial work at the Automobile Club?a place of refuge and luxury for its European members, but one where Egyptians may appear only as servants. Alku, the lifelong Nubian servant of Egypt?s corrupt king, runs the show in all but name. The servants, a squabbling, humorous, and deeply human group, live in a perpetual state of fear: beaten for their mistakes, their wages dependent on Alku?s whims. When Abd el-Aziz?s pride gets the better of him and he stands up for himself, his death?as much from shame as from his injuries after Alku has him beaten?leaves his widow further impoverished and two of his sons obliged to work in the Club. As the family is drawn into the turbulent politics of Egypt?public and private?both servants and masters are subsumed by the country?s social upheaval. Soon, the Egyptians of the Automobile Club face a stark choice: to live safely but without dignity as servants, or to fight for their rights and risk everything. Printed Pages: 496. Buchnummer des Verkäufers 96984

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Inhaltsangabe: From the most popular Egyptian novelist of his generation (“a suitable heir to the mantle worn by Naguib Mahfouz” — The Guardian), a rollicking, exuberant and powerfully moving story of a family swept up by social unrest in post–World War II Cairo.

Once a respected landowner, Abd el-Aziz Gaafar fell into penury and moved his family to Cairo, where he was forced into menial work at the Automobile Club—a refuge of colonial luxury for its European members. There, Alku, the lifelong Nubian retainer of Egypt’s corrupt and dissolute king, lords it over the staff, a squabbling but tight-knit group, who live in perpetual fear, as they are thrashed for their mistakes, their wages dependent on Alku’s whims. When, one day, Abd el-Aziz stands up for himself, he is beaten. Soon afterward, he dies, as much from shame as from his injuries, leaving his widow and four children further impoverished. The family’s loss propels them down different paths: the responsible son, Kamel, takes over his late father’s post in the Club’s storeroom, even as his law school friends seduce him into revolutionary politics; Mahmud joins his brother working at the Club but spends his free time sleeping with older women—for a fee, which he splits with his partner in crime, his devil-may-care workout buddy and neighbor, Fawzy; their greedy brother Said breaks away to follow ambitions of his own; and their only sister, Saleha, is torn between her dream of studying mathematics and the security of settling down as a wife and saving her family.

It is at the Club, too, that Kamel’s dangerous politics will find the favor and patronage of the king’s seditious cousin, an unlikely revolutionary plotter–cum–bon vivant. Soon, both servants and masters will be subsumed by the brewing social upheaval. And the Egyptians of the Automobile Club will face a stark choice: to live safely, but without dignity, or to fight for their rights and risk everything.

Full of absorbing incident, and marvelously drawn characters, Alaa Al Aswany’s novel gives us Egypt on the brink of changes that resonate to this day. It is an irresistible confirmation of Al Aswany’s reputation as one of the Middle East’s most beguiling storytellers and insightful interpreters of the human spirit.

About the Author: ALAA AL ASWANY is the author of The Yacoubian Building, which was long-listed for the International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award in 2006 and was the best-selling novel in the Arab world for more than five years; Chicago, named by Newsday as the best translated novel of 2006; and the story collection Friendly Fire. He has received numerous awards internationally, including the Bashrahil Prize for the Arabic novel, the Kavafis Award from Greece and the Premio Grinzane Cavour from Italy. He was recently named by the London Times as one of the best fifty authors to have been translated into English over the last fifty years. Translated from the Arabic by Russell Harris.

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Bibliografische Details

Titel: The Automobile Club of Egypt
Verlag: Random House India
Erscheinungsdatum: 2015
Einband: Softcover
Zustand: New
Auflage: First edition.

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Alaa Al Aswany
Verlag: Canongate Books Ltd Jan 2016 (2016)
ISBN 10: 0857862200 ISBN 13: 9780857862204
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Buchbeschreibung Canongate Books Ltd Jan 2016, 2016. Taschenbuch. Buchzustand: Neu. Neuware - The servants, a squabbling, humorous and deeply human group, live in a perpetual state of fear under the tyrannical rule of Alku. When Abd el-Aziz Gaafar becomes the target of Alku's cruelty and his pride gets the better of him, a devastating act sends ripples through his family. Soon, the Gaafars are drawn into the turbulent politics of the club - both public and private - and servants and masters are subsumed by Egypt's social upheaval. 480 pp. Englisch. Artikel-Nr. 9780857862204

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