Thursday, April 7, 2016
Weekly Report 6 - Alaa Al Aswany and his role in the revolution in Egypt
Alaa Al Aswany is a well known novelist in the Arab world who wrote the novel, "The Yacoubian Building", which beings up political issues and corruption that is consistent with Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak during his time in office. His book tells a tale of a real place, where his father was a lawyer for the Yacoubian Building. Including occurrences of the revolution, Al Aswany writes to question if people are willing to sacrifice what is necessary in order to bring freedom, or if people have evolved from a life of freedoms and have adapted to living under a dictatorship.
He is also known for his activism during Egypt's Uprising that occurred in 2011 at the peak of the Arab Spring. Not only has his novel, "The Yacoubian Building", been called "the novel of the Arab Spring, he has also been regarded as the face of the leaderless revolution and actually in Tahrir Square until former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak finally stepped down after 18 days of protests. While the novelist described his experience of the revolution of his country to be unbelievable, he still believed there was work to be done and concerned about the future state of things, such that even after Mubarak was driven out of office, there were still presence of his regime with the country's military rulers and other international powers who could impose a new threat to Egypt. Al Aswany continued to reveal the secrets of the Egyptian government by help protesters who were requesting the military authorities to investigate the corruption of Mubarak's presidency, which successfully lead to a case on the family's financial affairs.
Since then, Al Aswany has been hopeful for future directions for developing a secular, liberal, democratic state for Egypt, even though less than 20% of population supports this platform, but expects it to become a reality before he dies.