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Butterfly Wings: An Egyptian Novel

by Mohamed Salmawy, translated by Raphael Cohen - £10.99  The American University in Cairo Press (2014)
paperback    ISBN 13: 9789774166426 | ISBN 10: 9774166426

The prescient Egyptian novel that described the January 2011 Revolution before it happened.
 
A chance encounter on a plane throws together Doha, a fashion designer unhappily married to a leading figure in the Mubarak regime, and Ashraf, an academic and leading dissident. The story of their relationship and Doha’s self-discovery runs alongside a young Egyptian’s search for the mother he never knew, and these intersecting narratives unfold against the background of political protests that culminate in the overthrow of the regime.
 
A moving and at times humorous story, Butterfly Wings is an extended allegory of Egypt’s modern experience of authoritarian rule and explores the fractures and challenges of a society at the moment of revolutionary transformation. Mohamed Salmawy’s almost prophetic novel was first published in Arabic immediately prior to the events of 25 January 2011, and has been celebrated as ‘the novel that predicted the Revolution.’
 
First published in Arabic in 2011 by al-Dar al-Misriya al-Libnaniya as Ajnihat al-farasha.

(Price & availability last checked: April 2020)

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In booklists: World Fiction - Egypt, World Fiction - Africa, Writers by Surname - S, Political Fiction,
In categories: Fiction, World - Africa, Politics & Philosophy,

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