An understated elegance

Alaa Al Aswany’s dignified demeanour masks his determined political verve.

26th January, 2008

Alaa Al Aswany’s dignified demeanour masks his determined political verve.

Writing a novel, for Alaa Al Aswany, is more difficult than pulling teeth. The 50year-old Egyptian author is well versed in both practices - for the last 20 years, he has risen at 6am and spent four hours writing before heading to his dental surgery in downtown Cairo.

His father, writer and lawyer Abbas Al Aswany, has received the state prize in literature but,...

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