Department of Middle Eastern Studies
Department of Middle Eastern Studies

'Nurturing Love in Prison'

Fri, September 28, 2018
'Nurturing Love in Prison'
Ahmed Naji, the author of Using Life, published by CMES last November to much acclaim, recently wrote an essay about the challenges of nurturing relationships during his ten months in prison for "violating public morality" after a 65-year-old man in Cairo claimed reading a published excerpt from Using Life gave him heart palpitations. The essay was translated into English from the original Arabic by DMES Ph.D. student Radwa El Barouni and published on the European online literary journal, Versopolis. Naji was released from prison after serving ten months of his two-year prison but is still banned from leaving Egypt. 


"When thrown into prison, you realize that the hustle and bustle, the friends, all the pomp and fanfare, everything that has ever surrounded you, all disappear into thin air. Nothing remains. The beloveds, the mothers, and the wives are the only ones who continue to linger, persistent. Diligently visiting, preparing food, bringing clothes and socks, and snatching a quick hug at the end of every visit as they bid you farewell."--Ahmed Najis



Radwa is a Ph.D. candidate, who is currently teaching at Williams College. Her research and teaching interests include Modern Arabic Literature, Representation of history and writing of history in creative works, Arabic Graphic Novels, Critical theory, Intellectual history, Persian Literature, Teaching Arabic as a foreign language, Teaching Culture


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