Ordinary Egyptians: Creating the Modern Nation Through Popular Culture
By Ziad Fahmy
Why this book?
Ziad Fahmy’s book on the importance of popular culture in the history of modern Egypt and the anti-British revolution of 1919 was a real landmark. Bringing together songs, jokes, vaudeville plays, and more, he manages to draw out a story of Egyptian anti-colonial, nationalism that is not confined to elite circles or confined by bourgeois morality. This is history from the streets. Although it is an academic book, it is written with an engaging style that captures some of the excitement of this period. Published in 2011, Fahmy’s book opened up space for research and writing on the history of Arabic pop culture.
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