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The Time and the Place and other stories

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  246 ratings  ·  17 reviews
These twenty stories represent nearly thirty years of Mahfouz's career. Selected and translated by the distinguished scholar Denys Johnson-Davies, they have all the celebrated and distinctive characters and qualities found in Mahfouz's novels: the denizens of the narrow alleyways of Cairo; dark ruminations on death; experiments with the supernatural; and witty excursions i ...more
Paperback, 192 pages
Published 1991 by The American University in Cairo Press
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3.98  · 
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 ·  246 ratings  ·  17 reviews

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Fred Daly
Oct 29, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Short stories, some very short. They are strange -- he reminds me of Kafka, Camus, and the editor says Proust. Not sure how students will like them, but they are short. They aren't exactly memorable individually, but they add up to a pretty interesting world view.
Madhulika Liddle
Oct 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A group of people, sheltering from the rain in a bus stop, are witness to a baffling series of scenes—the near-lynching of a thief, a horrific car accident, a couple making love in public atop a corpse—and cannot tell if what they are watching is real, or the shooting of a film. A man comes home to a house that he realizes is like his but isn’t and a woman who resembles his wife but is not. A man dreams of himself, in a medieval avatar, burying a mysterious box in the place that is now his home— ...more
May 14, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Learning about Egyptian culture through these short stories, translated by Denys Johnson-Davies is to have a sample of different strata of Cairene life. Perhaps my favorite was the story, rather, more parable than story, called "The Wasteland" in which a man is forced to give up his wife to follow a leader; his plans for revenge are thwarted -- "why is it that all beings disappear and nothing is left but dust?" It makes you think about the expression, "another time". But time does not come again ...more
Sep 17, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: short-stories
Read "The Answer Is No" in the textbook for my Literary Heritage class. Loved that the main character stood her ground even though she was still affected after being sexually assaulted at 14. Wish I could find out what happened next but alas the abrupt ending was part of the reason this short story was good.
Nov 19, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
One of my students at IUP recommended Mahfouz to me. I have wanted to read him since he won the Nobel Prize for Literature in the 1980's.

This collection of short stories are excellent. Some have an otherworldly quality to them. When I have a little more time next month, I will read his Cairo Trilogy.
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Mahfouz has otherwise been consistently good, not sure why this collection of short stories didn't work for me. Read about half of them.
Jun 15, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I wanted to read this collection of 20-30 years of stories because I'd only ever read "Zabalawi" by Mahfouz, and without context, I found that story kind of unresolved. I think in the process I learned that Zabalawi's mystifications are the context for themselves and much of this book, and that probably short stories are not Mahfouz's prime vehicle; if I had a year, I'd read the Cairo Trilogy and probably know what I wanted to know. But instead, I read a collection with a lot of parables, mostly ...more
keith koenigsberg
Feb 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Amazing. These short stories are utterly un-western. They take place in Egypt, and the perpectives on narrative are very different. Emphasis can often be on the context, the continuity of life, themes of man's place in the universe, etc, all of this above the actual narrative. A story about a crime investigation focuses more on the investigator's life and thoughts than the actual crime. Disorienting. Read this.
David Milne
Interesting to read a different style of Mahfouz book, for perspective, but I wouldn't rate it as one of his best. Many of the stories seem to abruptly finish, which I'm sure there is a reason for, but I couldn't understand it.
3.5 stars
Jan 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
These are some of my favorite shorts stories by such an amazing author!
Aug 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My two favorite stories were "The Norwegian Rat" and "At the bus stop."
Nausheen Husain
"Necessity has its own rules."
Gratcia Siahaya
Oct 20, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sedang membaca, versi terjemahannya dalam bahasa Indonesia, disini judulnya adalah Zahiya (Kafe yang Kosong), hasil bongkar2 dari attic, malah ketemu dengan buku yang sudah lama terlupakan, lupa sudah pernah baca atau belum, yg ada cuma tanda tangan saya saja menandakan bahwa saya yang membelinya.
Nov 13, 2008 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Windy Hapsari
Recommended to Abah by: Gratcia
Salam. Wah klo G yang kasih rekomen, tentunya atuh buku yang oekeh punya. Wismilak with my time controling ya. Oom lagi klenger asyik nulis aja kok G. God bless you.
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M Nageiub
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Apr 12, 2014
I am not so sure as to what I read from cover to cover, much less comprehend, nevertheless somewher e out there are readers whom are astute enough to recognize whatever it was that Naguib Mahfouz conveyed via his short stories collected herein.
Sherif Sami
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Naguib Mahfouz (Arabic author profile: نجيب محفوظ) was an Egyptian writer who won the 1988 Nobel Prize for Literature. He published over 50 novels, over 350 short stories, dozens of movie scripts, and five plays over a 70-year career. Many of his works have been made into Egyptian and foreign films.
“Take your fill, for you will not see again that which you are leaving. Every moment is the last.” 1 likes
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