Alaa Al-Aswany is the recipient of many distinguished international literary honors and awards. His novels are acclaimed in the field of contemporary literature, selling millions of copies in three dozen languages and adapted into film and theater performances. Al-Aswany reached international literary acclaim with his ground-breaking 2002 novel The Yacoubian Building. Through the prism of a fashionable downtown Cairo building, he exposes the corrupt dealmaking and exploitative relationships of power in Mubarak’s Egypt. His latest novel The Republic, As If, published in 2018, is set during the events of Egypt’s 2011 revolution. Al-Aswany is the author of seventeen books—novels, short story collections, and compendiums of his articles. He has taught and lectured at universities and leading cultural institutions around the world. A leading democracy advocate, his op-eds have appeared in such influential publications as The New York Times, Le Monde, the Financial Times, and The Guardian. Al‑Aswany pens a weekly column for Deutsche Welle’s Arabic news site and is fluent in Arabic, English, French, and Spanish.
Source of Influence: Arts & Culture
Status: Featured in current year