War in the Land of Egypt

By Yusuf al-Qa'id,

Book cover of War in the Land of Egypt

Book description

Egypt on the eve of the 1973 October war. A young man has been drafted into the army. His father, the village elder, persuades a poor night-watchman to send his own son as a stand-in. But the impersonation plan goes horribly wrong, with tragicomic results. Qa'id's tale of the fiasco…

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Why read it?

1 author picked War in the Land of Egypt as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

This brief volume was first published 35 years ago but stands up over time. It is an allegory about Egypt during the early years of Anwar al-Sadat's rule, but speaks to the larger issues of corruption, the arrogance of power, and the fraying of societal bonds under authoritarian leaders. 

From Steven's list on understanding the Middle East.

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