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 famous egyptians(part2)

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ma7moud 3omar

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عدد الرسائل : 114
العمر : 25
رقم العضوية : 45
تاريخ التسجيل : 26/01/2009

مُساهمةموضوع: famous egyptians(part2)   الثلاثاء فبراير 17, 2009 6:31 pm

Mahfouz left academia and pursued a career in the Ministry of Religious affairs. However, he was soon moved to a role in the Ministry of Culture as the official responsible for the film industry, due to his apparent atheism.[3]

A longtime civil servant, Mahfouz served in the Ministry of Mortmain Endowments, then as Director of Censorship in the Bureau of Art, Director of the Foundation for the Support of the Cinema, and finally as a consultant to the Ministry of Culture. He published 34 novels, over 350 short stories, dozens of movie scripts and five plays over a 70-year career. Many of his works have been made into Arabic-language films.

Mahfouz left his post as the Director of Censorship and was appointed Director of the Foundation for the Support of the Cinema. He was a contributing editor for the leading newspaper el-Ahram and in 1969 he became a consultant to the Ministry of Culture, retiring in 1972. He was a board member of Dar el-Ma'aref publishing house. Many of his novels were serialized in el-Ahram, and his writings also appeared in his weekly column, "Point of View". Before the Nobel Prize only a few of his novels had appeared in the West.

Mahfouz remained a bachelor until the age of 43. The reason as to his late marriage was that Mahfouz laboured under his conviction that marriage with its numerous restrictions and limitations would hamper his literary future. In 1954, he married an Egyptian woman, with whom he had two daughters.

Mahfouz did not shrink from controversy outside of his work. As a consequence of his outspoken support for Sadat's Camp David peace treaty with Israel in 1978, his books were banned in many Arab countries until after he won the Nobel prize.

Like many Egyptian writers and intellectuals, Mahfouz was on an Islamic fundamentalist "death list". He defended Salman Rushdie after Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini condemned Rushdie to death in 1989, but also criticized his Satanic Verses as "insulting" to Islam. Mahfouz believed in freedom of expression and although he did not personally agree with Rushdie's work, he did not believe that there should be a fatwa condemning him to death for it. He also condemned Khomeini for issuing the fatwa, for he did not believe that the Ayatollah was representing Islam.

In 1989, after Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini's fatwa calling for Salman Rushdie and his publishers to be killed, Mahfouz called Khomeini a terrorist.[4] Shortly after Mahfouz joined 80 other intellectuals in declaring that "no blasphemy harms Islam and Muslims so much as the call for murdering a writer."[5] The Rushdie incident also provoked fundamentalist Muslims to regret not having made an example of Mahfouz, one telling a journalist:

If only we had behaved in the proper Islamic manner with Naguib Mahfouz, we would not have been assailed by the appearance of Salman Rushdie. Had we killed Naguib Mahfouz, Salman Rushdie would not have appeared.[6]

The appearance of The Satanic Verses brought back up the controversy surrounding Mahfouz's Children of Gebelawi. Death threats against Mahfouz followed, including one from the "blind sheikh," Egyptian theologian Omar Abdul-Rahman. Like Rushdie, Mahfouz was given police protection, but in 1994 Islamic extremists almost succeeded in assassinating the 82-year-old novelist by stabbing him in the neck outside his Cairo home. He survived, permanently affected by damage to nerves in his right hand. After the incident Mahfouz was unable to write for more than a few minutes a day and consequently produced fewer and fewer works. Subsequently, he lived under constant bodyguard protection. Finally, in the beginning of 2006, the novel was published in Egypt with a preface written by Ahmad Kamal Aboul-Magd.

Prior to his death, Mahfouz was the oldest living Nobel Literature laureate and the third oldest of all time, trailing only Bertrand Russell and Halldor Laxness. At the time of his death, he was the only Arabic-language writer to have won the Nobel Prize for Literature.

In July 2006, Mahfouz sustained an injury to his head as a result of a fall. He remained ill until his death on August 30, 2006 in a Cairo hospital.

In his old age Mahfouz became nearly blind, and though he continued to write, he had difficulties in holding a pen or a pencil. He also had to abandon his daily habit of meeting his friends at coffeehouses. Prior to his death, he suffered from a bleeding ulcer, kidney problems, and cardiac failure.

Mahfouz was accorded a state funeral with full military honors on August 31, 2006 in Cairo. His funeral took place in the el-Rashdan Mosque in Nasr City on the outskirts of Cairo.

Mahfouz once dreamed that all the social classes of Egypt, including the very poor, would join his funeral procession. However, attendance was tightly restricted by the Egyptian government amid protest by mourners.
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famous egyptians(part2)
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