Raphael Cormack

Raphael Cormack is a Wolfson PhD student in Arabic literature at the University of Edinburgh and editor, with Max Shmookler, of The Book of Khartoum, a collection of Sudanese short stories.

At​ this year’s International Book Fair in Cairo, I met a bookseller who promised me he had a full run of a 15-part early 20th-century Arabic translation of a work by Michel Saunière entitled Flamberge. At 11.30 the next morning I was ushered into the living room of the third-floor flat that served as his storeroom. The flat had the usual contents – comfy chairs, a desk, a...

From The Blog
2 March 2011

Getting back to Tahrir Square in the middle of the celebrations after the fall of Mubarak was a lot easier than getting out of Egypt on 3 February had been. In our apartment on the eighth floor, glued to al-Jazeera, my flatmates and I had watched on TV what was happening in the street below – the men riding into the square on horses and camels, the petrol bombs, the casualties. Our building was guarded by a group of men with big sticks. When people started throwing rocks at our balcony, we decided it was time to leave.

Read anywhere with the London Review of Books app, available now from the App Store for Apple devices, Google Play for Android devices and Amazon for your Kindle Fire.

Sign up to our newsletter

For highlights from the latest issue, our archive and the blog, as well as news, events and exclusive promotions.

Newsletter Preferences