If you want to move people, you look for a point of sensitivity, and in Egypt nothing moves people as much as religion.
I consider Khomeini's position dangerous. He does not have the right to pass judgment-that is not the Islamic way.
History is full of people who went to prison or were burned at the stake for proclaiming their ideas. Society has always defended itself.
It's clearly more important to treat one's fellow man well than to be always praying and fasting and touching one's head to a prayer mat.
I thought they would never select an Eastern writer for the Nobel. I was surprised.
My wife thought I deserved it, but I always thought the Nobel a Western prize.
I accepted the interviews and encounters that had to be held with the media, but I would have preferred to work in peace.
We are passing through a very sensitive time, and on the whole, this country is facing very big problems.
I didn't make any money from my writing until much later. I published about 80 stories for nothing. I spent on literature.
We are like a woman with a difficult pregnancy. We have to rebuild the social classes in Egypt, and we must change the way things were.
If the urge to write should ever leave me, I want that day to be my last.
I believe society has a right to defend itself, just as the individual has the right to attack that with which he disagrees.
I started writing while I was a little boy. Maybe it's because I was reading a lot of books I admired, and thought that I would like to write something like that someday. Also, my love for good writing pushed me.
The Arab world also won the Nobel with me. I believe that international doors have opened, and that from now on, literate people will consider Arab literature also. We deserve that recognition.
The writer interweaves a story with his own doubts, questions, and values. That is art.
We used the Western style to express our own themes and stories. But don't forget that our heritage includes The Thousand and One Nights.
There are no heroes in most of my stories. I look at our society with a critical eye and find nothing extraordinary in the people I see.
It is simply not part of my culture to preserve notes. I have never heard of a writer preserving his early drafts.
If we reject science, we reject the common man.
Hosni Mubarak... his constitution is not democratic, but he is democratic. We can voice our opinions now. The press is free.
Events at home, at work, in the street - these are the bases for a story.
I reject any path which rejects life, but I can't help loving Sufism because it sounds so beautiful. It gives relief in the midst of battle.
The Nobel Prize has given me, for the first time in my life, the feeling that my literature could be appreciated on an international level.
Excessive concern with religion seems to me a last resort for people who have been exhausted by life.
I've never worked in politics, never been a member of an official committee or a political party.
I was reading a lot of books I admired, and thought that I would like to write something like that someday.
an Arabian narrative art that applies to all mankind.
At my age it is unseemly to be pessimistic.
I was a government employee in the morning and a writer in the evening.
Today's interpretations of religion are often backward and contradict the needs of civilization.
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