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Tawfīq, Aḩmad Khālid

Entry updated 29 May 2020. Tagged: Author.

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(1962-2018) Egyptian author and translator, whose surname has also been rendered as Towfik. After publishing many works of sf, fantasy and horror (he himself claimed more than 500 original and translated titles, one-third being genre fiction), he became of particular sf interest for Yūtūbiyā (2008; trans Chip Rossetti as Utopia 2011), which depicts two interdependent Near Future societies: an oppressed, resource-deficient Egypt and "Utopia", a large enclave in Europe inhabited by wealthy Egyptians, enriched by their control of an oil substitute. Their contempt for their fellow is so profound (and perhaps so ambivalent) that members of Utopia go on hunting expeditions among the under-classes, bringing back body parts as trophies to affirm their kills. The ending of the tale, in which any revolt is rendered ineffective through various intellectual and organizational failures, may be seen as adumbrating the fate of the Arab Spring of 2012 (see also Politics). [JC]

Aḩmad Khālid Tawfīq

born Tanta, Egypt: June 1962

died Cairo, Egypt: 2 April 2018

works (highly selected)

  • Yūtūbiyā (Cario, Egypt: Mirit, 2008) [binding unknown/]
    • Utopia (Doha, Qatar: Bloomsbury Qatar Foundation, 2011) [trans by Chip Rossetti of the above: hb/The Parish]

about the author

  • Ian Campbell. "Prefiguring Egypt's Arab Spring: Allegory and Allusion in Aḩmad Khālid Tawfīq's Utopia." (November 2015 Science Fiction Studies #127) [nonfiction: Vol 42, Part 3: mag/]

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