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Raphael Cormack

Raphael Cormack is a Wolfson PhD student in Arabic literature at the University of Edinburgh and editor, with Max Shmookler, of The Book of Khartoum, a collection of Sudanese short stories.

At​ this year’s International Book Fair in Cairo, I met a bookseller who promised me he had a full run of a 15-part early 20th-century Arabic translation of a work by Michel Saunière entitled Flamberge. At 11.30 the next morning I was ushered into the living room of the third-floor flat that served as his storeroom. The flat had the usual contents – comfy chairs, a desk, a...

From The Blog
2 March 2011

Getting back to Tahrir Square in the middle of the celebrations after the fall of Mubarak was a lot easier than getting out of Egypt on 3 February had been. In our apartment on the eighth floor, glued to al-Jazeera, my flatmates and I had watched on TV what was happening in the street below – the men riding into the square on horses and camels, the petrol bombs, the casualties. Our building was guarded by a group of men with big sticks. When people started throwing rocks at our balcony, we decided it was time to leave.

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