The series Memories of Writing, issued by the General Authority for Culture Palaces, specializes in reprints of important, out-of-print books on culture and the arts. The series was the brainchild of veteran critic Ragaa al-Naqqash, who established it only a few years before his death and was keen to focus on works with an enduring value.
The latest title in the series is a new edition of The View from Cairo, by the late historian Shafiq Ghurbal. The introduction, written by Dr. Ahmed Zakariya al-Shalaq, tells us that this was Ghurbal’s last work, a collection of radio talks given before his death in 1961. The cultural censor’s office at Egyptian radio, which often published selections from radio lectures given by noted writers, had wanted to publish this collection as well, whose title was chosen by Ghurbal himself before his death.
The first section of the book contains a measured response to fabrications about Arabs, showing how many Arab intellectuals have enriched human civilization and its moral and scientific traditions. The second section contains a critical review of the ideas of many pioneers of thought, both Arabs and non-Arabs.
Min zawiyat al-Qahira, by Mohammed Shafiq Ghurbal, General Authority for Culture Palaces, Memories of Writing series, 85 pp.