The publication of the first novels of Naguib Mahfouz and excellence in Islamic history and social literature.. the late novelist Abdel Hamid Gouda Al-Sahar

The late writer Abd al-Hamid Judeh al-Sahar believes that the historical story is used for three purposes, the first of which is to present a historical picture of a vibrant period, which may agree with historical facts or not pay attention to them, and second: to explain important events in history in an explanation that is not far from the truth, and third: the exploitation of history And civilizations to highlight the crisis of human civilization, the problem of the individual and his relationship to society.

Cairo- “I resolved to derive all my stories from the reality of life, to search for people to live among and read their lives, and then coordinate the course in which the characters and events will rush until the story reaches its natural end.”

In his book “The Story Through My Personal Experiences”, the writer Abdel Hamid Joudeh Al-Sahar tells about his love for reading and writing, and about the methods he uses to inspire his stories, stressing that the first thing that comes to his mind is to use his experiences, what he heard and what he memorized over the years.

As al-Sahar, who passed away on this day, January 22, 1975, says that writing exhausted him, because he gave himself two characters in his stories, an Islamic character and a social character, and there is no relationship between their audience. describe it as a newspaper Pyramids He “confused his audience of readers, so his fans of religious stories imagine him as an old man with a turban, and the audience of stories and novels see him as a modern writer, and it does not occur to anyone that this amazing mixture of the two types of literature.”


El-Sahar was born in the Daher neighborhood in the heart of Cairo on April 25, 1913, into a family of merchants, and he was the first employee in his family, as he described it.

He loved reading from an early age, and he used to buy stories from his expenses with his brothers, and they issued a literary magazine when they were young, and they competed in writing stories and articles, and they distributed the magazine for free to passersby.

Al-Sahar says: “My brothers began reading the magazine to every visitor, and I listened ecstatically, until I memorized the materials of the first issue, and this was my first taste of literature.”

Al-Sahar learned from his two brothers the love of reading, so he used to go with them to the library, and borrow books throughout the summer vacation and read them. He also learned from them a love of cinema and going to it.

He married his cousin before completing his studies, then he obtained a bachelor’s degree in commerce from King Fouad I University (Cairo), and was appointed as a translator in the Royal Air Force.

His first attempts

He wrote an article using a book written by his university professor on political economy, and sent it to Al-Ahram newspaper. He was surprised by its publication. This encouraged him to translate articles for an English book, and sent them again to Al-Ahram, so they were all published.

He tells in a television interview that he witnessed a quarrel in a neighbor’s house, and the wife was in control, so he drew inspiration from them from his first story, “The Man of the House”, and sent it to Al-Resala magazine.

He met the writer Naguib Mahfouz, and knew that he was facing problems in publishing, and suggested that they publish for themselves, so he borrowed his wife’s jewelry, to finance his publishing project, and printed the novel “Radopis” by Mahfouz, stressing that they could not print more than 500 or 1000 copies, and founded with his brother The “Egypt” library to become one of the most important Egyptian publishing houses.

Ahmose the hero of independence

In his early years at university, El-Sahar read a French novel, the writer of which said that he was writing and a picture of his daughter imagined in front of him, writing what he believed would bring joy to her heart. The idea occupied Sahar’s head, and he addressed himself: “Why don’t I write a historical story based on the enormity of the accidents, that my daughter would be happy with if she read it one day?”

3 years after graduating from university, El-Sahar decided to fulfill his dream and write. He spent 20 continuous days in which he did not meet anyone, making the hero of his story capable of everything, until he finished writing the last word of his story “Ahmose the Hero of Independence” in 1940.

Islamic history

And because he was raised from a young age on religious stories, and wished to write the biography of the Prophet in his own style, and wanted to present a “spiritual interpretation of history” as he put it, he presented to the Arab library many stories about Islamic personalities, such as his stories: “Bilal Muezzin the Messenger”, and “Saad bin Abi Waqqas, Sons of Abu Bakr, Hajar Al-Masrya, Umm Al-Arab, Banu Ismail, Al-Adnanun, Quraysh, Khadija bint Khuwaylid, and Ibrahim’s call, and his most important books “Muhammad is the Messenger of God and those with him”, which was presented in a television series in the eighties of the last century. He writes in an excerpt from the book:

“Muhammad, may God’s prayers and peace be upon him, knew his Lord before he was resurrected, and his heart shone with lights that facilitated for him to watch beyond his senses, so his sight and insight were equal and he was guided to the path of truth, until when God completed his training and preparation to bear the revelation of the revelation on him, he was assigned the message, so he was upon him alone with the support of his Lord. To remove polytheism and idolatry from the necks of people.”

About his specialization in the literature of the Islamic novel, El-Sahar says, “I felt that the Islamic heritage and Arab and Islamic culture represent an important and fundamental thing within the cycles of Egypt’s intellectual development through the ages, and that it is not possible to develop literature and the development of Egyptian culture without returning to the inspiration and realization of this heritage at the intellectual and artistic levels.”

Awakening the feelings of the nation

In his book “The Islamic Personality in the Modern Egyptian Novel”, Dr. Kamal Saad Khalifa believes that Al-Sahar was motivated towards Islamic history due to its richness and majesty, and his awareness of the importance of awakening the feelings of the nation and stirring up its memory, on which the elements of backwardness multiplied. A trustworthy worker, his creative imagination, and the historical truth was the main pillar from which his narrative construction was based.

historical story

Al-Sahar believes that the historical story is used for three purposes, the first of which is to present a historical picture of a vibrant period, which may agree with the historical facts or not pay attention to them, and the second: to explain the important events in history in an explanation that is not far from the truth, and the last of which is: the exploitation of history and civilizations to highlight the crisis of human civilization The problem of the individual and his relationship to society.

He presented his autobiography in an interesting narrative framework in his book “The Story of My Life”, addressing his childhood to his youth, his family’s relations with neighbors and relatives, and his relations with his siblings.

Regarding his writing habits, Al-Sahar confirms – in a television interview – that he sleeps early to wake up early, and writes from five to eight thirty in the morning, and he writes every day regularly.

Al-Sahar wrote religious stories for children, such as the stories of the prophets, the Rightly-Guided Caliphs, and the Prophet’s biography in 24 parts for children. He learned about the history of the Arabs in Europe while writing “The Arabs in Europe” for children.


He went to the cinema and wrote his first film, “The Path of Al-Mahabeel” (1955) with the participation of Naguib Mahfouz and Tawfiq Saleh, starring the artist Shukri Sarhan. her daughter.

He also wrote the story of the famous movie “My wife is a general manager” (1966), addressing the issue of women’s work in the society of the sixties, to be presented by major artists such as Shadia and Salah Zulfikar and directed by Fatin Abdel Wahab. And on his novel “The Grandson”, the famous social cinematic movie was presented, and he collaborated with a group of writers such as Tawfiq Al-Hakim and Abdul Rahman Al-Sharqawi in writing the script for the movie “The Message” (1976) directed by Mustafa Al-Akkad.

He took over as editor-in-chief of the Cinema Magazine in 1973, to save it from its financial crisis, and a year after his death – in 1975 – the Society of Film Critics and Writers gave him its appreciation award for his entire cinematic work.

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