year, the AUC Press celebrates the centenary of the Egyptian Nobel laureate’s
birth. Click here to read more.
Life and His Writing
Mahfouz was born on December 11, 1911, in the old Gamaliya quarter of Cairo,
the youngest of seven children in a family of five boys and two girls. Although
he had many siblings, Mahfouz felt like an only child because the next youngest
brother was ten years older than him. He mourned his lack of normal sibling
bonds, which is reflected in the portrayal of fraternal relationships in much
of his work. But his childhood was a happy one—the family was stable and
loving, with religion playing a very important role in their life—and there are
many signs of Mahfouz’s affection for his early childhood in his work.