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Tawfiq al-Hakim

Tawfiq al-Hakim, the son of a wealthy Egyptian judge, was born in Alexandria in 1898. He studied law in Cairo, graduating in 1925, and then continued his studies in Paris. Following his return from France, he worked as a deputy prosecutor in Alexandria, combining his legal work with writing. In 1929, he transferred to the civil courts and worked in other cities, including Tanta, Damanhour and Dessouk. He also worked as a journalist in Akhbar al-Yom newspaper, and as a manager of the Egyptian National Library. 

Although he wrote novels, poems and essays, he is best remembered as a prolific playwright who played a key role in the development of Arabic drama. He died in 1987.

Published works by Tawfiq al-Hakim

 

 

Articles

A prisoner of the mind 
Extract from Hakim's autobiography (al-Ahram Weekly, 3 August, 2000

Changing theatrical direction 
Another extract from Hakim's autobiography (al-Ahram Weekly, 8 October, 1998)

The wise sage of Arabic literature 
A profile and bibliography (Egypt Magazine, January 1997)

The achievements of Tawfiq al-Hakim 
by Roger Allen (from An Introduction to Arabic Literature, Cambridge University Press, 2000)

Creative antagonisms 
Mursi Saad reviews The Tavern of Life and Other Stories (al-Ahram Weekly, 8 October, 1998)

A century's judgment 
An assessment of Hakim on the 100th anniversary of his birth (al-Ahram Weekly, 8 October, 1998)

An epigraph and much effort 
Extracts from Taha Hussein's comment on Hakim's autobiography. Originally published in al-Akhbar newspaper, 30 January 1965, under the title Sahr al-'Umr (The Charm of Life)

Playing with narrative style 
Naguib Mahfouz's view of Hakim


Translated works by Tawfiq al-Hakim

Fate of a Cockroach and Other Plays
Denys Johnson-Davies (translator). Paperback, 1980
Available from: Amazon (US) Amazon (UK)

Fate of a Cockroach; Four Plays of Freedom
(African Writers Series, No. 117)
Available from: Amazon (US)

In the Tavern of Life & Other Stories
Hardcover, 1998
Available from: Amazon (US) Amazon (UK)

In the Tavern of Life and Other Stories
William Hutchins (editor). Paperback, 1998
Available from: Amazon (US) Amazon (UK)

Maze of Justice: Diary of a Country Prosecutor, an Egyptian Novel
Hardcover, 1989
Available from: Amazon (US)

Plays and Prefaces of Al-Hakim, Vol 2
Hardcover, 1982
Available from: Amazon (US)

Plays, Prefaces and Postscripts of Tawfiq Al-Hakim
(UNESCO Collection of Representative Works.
Contemporary Arab Authors Series, Vol 1)
Paperback, 1981
Available from: Amazon (US) Amazon (UK)

Plays, Prefaces and Postscripts of Tawfiq Al-Hakim
(UNESCO Collection of Representative Works.
Contemporary Arab Authors Series, Vol 2)
Hardcover, 1984
Available from: Amazon (US) Amazon (UK)

Plays, Prefaces and Postscripts of Tawfiq Al-Hakim: Theatre of the Mind, Vol 1
William M. Hutchins (translator). Hardcover, 1981
Available from: Amazon (US) Amazon (UK)

Return of the Spirit: Tawfiq Al-Hakim's Classic Novel of the 1919 Revolution: First Complete English Translation
Paperback, 1990
Available from: Amazon (US) Amazon (UK)

Return of the Spirit: Tawfiq Al-Hakim's Classic Novel of the 1919 Revolution
William M. Hutchins (translator). Hardcover, 1991
Available from: Amazon (US) Amazon (UK)

The Prison of Life: An Autobiographical Essay
Hardcover, 1993
Available from: Amazon (US) Amazon (UK)

The Return of Consciousness
(New York University Studies in Near Eastern Civilization, No 10)
Richard Bayly Winder (translator). Hardcover, 1985
Available from: Amazon (US)

The Tree Climber: A Play
Available from: Amazon (US) Amazon (UK)

The Tree Climber: A Play
Available from: Amazon (US) Amazon (UK)


Books about Tawfiq al-Hakim

Critical Perspectives on Tawfiq al-Hakim
William Hutchins (editor). Paperback, 1998
Available from: Amazon (US)

From the Ivory Tower: A Critical Analysis of Tawfiq Al-Hakim (St. Anthony's Middle East Monographs, No 19)
Paul Starkey. Hardcover, 1988
Available from: Amazon (US)

Tawfiq al-Hakim, playwright of Egypt
Richard Long.
Available from: Amazon (US)

     

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Last revised on 18 June, 2009