The novelist Alaa Al Aswany places his emigré characters in post-9/11 Chicago. chicago has 11 ratings and 2 reviews. Meron said: I loved this book! First of all it was amazing reading about the historical context of post 9/11 Americ. Chicago (Arabic: شيكاغو Shīkāgū) is a novel by Egyptian author Alaa-Al- Aswany. Published in Arabic in and in an English translation in The locale.

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This page was last edited on 4 Decemberat But Chicago is written for an Egyptian audience first, and any inconsistencies that consequently arise do not detract from its author’s empathy for even his most unpleasant characters. One storyline – in which an expatriate heart surgeon is asked to return to Egypt to save the life of a patient, who just happens to be the man who failed him at medical college solely on political grounds – is especially colourful.

Review: Chicago by Alaa Al Aswany

Retrieved from ” https: Often it’s of the rather desperate sort — especially when that female virtue is meant to stay untouched — though at least one character does find a good measure of release and happiness when she shells out for a vibrator. Published in Arabic in and qlaa an English translation in About Alaa Al Aswany.

This book tells the story of the men and women of Fighter Command who worked tirelessly in air bases scattered throughout Britain to thwart the Nazis.

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Political allegiance and connexions still overwhelm merit, though Chicago does offer enough distance to allow some of the characters more leeway.

There are some nice zingers against current Egyptian conditions, including: Nagi Abd al-Samad, an Egyptian student at Illinois, engages in both histology and poetry. Sara Mazzoni marked it as to-read Jun 28, Sukhdev Sandhu sinks into a gripping, chicao and occasionally soapy novel from one of Egypts bestselling writers.


No trivia or quizzes yet. Professor Graham is married to a younger black woman and their relationship is a moving target for intolerance.

Between two worlds

Her story is told with special poignancy. Her job-seeking efforts are conducted exclusively through newspaper classifieds, and both her plight and her methods seem anachronistic and over-simplified. He is the only first-person narrator in the novel and therefore takes on roles of author and activist, mirroring the multitasking of Al Aswany, who is himself also a practicing dentist in Cairo. A laa Al Aswany, the Egyptian novelist, became famous overnight in the Arab world with the publication of his first novel, The Yacoubian Building, in Such a concentration of Egyptian histologists, both as faculty and students, is hard to believe, but then so are many of Aswany’s American details — but then Chicago isn’t meant to shine a light on America, and turns out to be as much an Egyptian novel as The Yacoubian Building was.

There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Ultimately, Chicago is a truly brave work, and its translation offers Americans a provocative, vital perspective on the U.

Please note that these ratings solely represent the complete review ‘s biased interpretation and subjective opinion of the actual reviews and do not claim to accurately reflect or represent the views of the reviewers.

Long before that, the American characters are short-shrifted, portrayed in general as either racist ignoramuses or, if they’re black or progressively minded, as victims of an enduringly racist and capitalist society.

Working here just means showing up. Similarly the illustrative quotes chosen here are merely those the complete review subjectively believes represent the tenor and judgment of the review as a whole.


Mihaela rated it really liked it Jul 08, It may not reach the heights of The Yacoubian Building, but it reveals a gifted novelist in mid-flight. Ed King reviews Chicago. In the mix of characters living in the building one found, for instance, an extravagant playboy, a gay intellectual, and a devout Islamic fundamentalist.

Review: Chicago by Alaa Al Aswany | Books | The Guardian

Sep 15, Meron Semere rated it it was amazing. We always have extra time. If notability cannot be established, the article is likely to be mergedredirectedor deleted. There are profound, often chilling, moments of self-realisation along the a, as when the unhappy Dr Salah descends one morning into the basement of his house and uncovers an old suitcase that contains the clothes he had brought to America from Egypt 30 years alaq Sometimes, though, the exchanges of dialogue that he stages, such as that between Nagi and a professor about whether the present-day persecution of Christian Copts is motivated by religious or by political concerns, are so passionate and interesting that his pedagogic inclinations don’t grate.

Still, even with the writing as rough as it is, there’s an undeniable vigour here, chicao it is both readable and, in some ways, illuminating. One doctor still regrets having failed even to take futile steps decades earlier, while one student now takes some risks in trying to at least send a message to the present-day regime.

See 1 question about chicago…. The topic of this article may not meet Wikipedia’s notability guideline for books. Books by Alaa Al Aswany.