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Nawal El Saadawi

Egyptian novelist, doctor and militant writer on Arab women's problems and their struggle for liberation, Nawal el Saadawi was born in the village of Kafr Tahla. Refusing to accept the limitations imposed by both religious and colonial oppression on most women of rural origin, she qualified as a doctor in 1955 and rose to become Egypt's Director of Public Health. Since she began to write over 30 years ago, her books have concentrated on women. In 1972, her first work of non fiction, Women and Sex, evoked the antagonism of highly placed political and theological authorities, and the Ministry of Health was pressurised into dismissing her. Under similar pressures she lost her post as Chief Editor of a health journal and as Assistant General Secretary in the Medical Association in Egypt. From 1973 to 1976 she worked on researching women and neurosis in the Ain Shams University's Faculty of Medicine; and from 1979 to 1980 she was the United Nations Advisor for the Women's Programme in Africa (ECA) and Middle East (ECWA). Later in 1980, as a culmination of the long war she had fought for Egyptian women's social and intellectual freedom, an activity that had closed all avenues of official jobs to her, she was imprisoned under the Sadat regime. She has since founded the Arab Women's Solidarity Association and devoted her time to being a writer, journalist and worldwide speaker on women's issues. With the publication by Zed Books in 1980 of The Hidden Face of Eve: Women in the Arab World, English language readers were first introduced to the work of this major writer. Zed Books has also published four of her previous novels, Woman at Point Zero (1983), God Dies by the Nile (1985), The Circling Song (1989) and Searching (1991) as well as a collection of her non-fiction writings The Nawal El Saadawi Reader (1997). She has received three literary awards.

Works

cover Buy
The Essential Nawal El Saadawi
A Reader

Zed Books
The writing of Nawal el Saadawi is essential. Her dissident voice has consistently critiqued neo-imperialist international politics coupled with the oppression...
cover Buy
Walking Through Fire, 2nd Edition
A Life of Nawal El Saadawi

Zed Books
Walking Through Fire is the second volume of Nawal El Saadawi’s autobiography, the story of her extraordinary adult life. We read of her work as a rural...
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The Circling Song
2nd Edition

Zed Books
Hamida and Hamido are twins, grown from a single embryo inside one womb. Violently parted, they search the city in the darkening circles of a dream, only to...
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Searching

Zed Books
Fouada meets Farid, her lover, every Tuesday in a restaurant overlooking the Nile. But this week their usual table is deserted. She calls his home, but the...
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A Daughter of Isis
The Autobiography of Nawal El Saadawi, 2nd ed.

Zed Books
This is the first volume of the autobiography of Nawal El Saadawi, giving an emotionally shattering, but wonderfully lyrical, portrait of her childhood in a...
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God Dies by the Nile
Second Edition

Zed Books
Nawal El Saadawi is the 2007 recipient of the African Literature Association’s Fonlon-Nichols Award! "People have become corrupt everywhere. You can search...
  Bonus
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The Hidden Face of Eve
Women in the Arab World, Second Edition

Zed Books
This powerful account of brutality against women in the Muslim world remains as shocking today as when it was first published, more than a quarter of a century...
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Woman at Point Zero
Second Edition

Zed Books
"All the men I did get to know, every single man of them, has filled me with but one desire: to lift my hand and bring it smashing down on his face. But...
Nawal El Saadawi

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