With the passing away of
My position on everything I have read throughout my life -- and my readings include the Ancient Egyptian and Arabic heritage as well as English and French creative works -- was, as far as possible, a neutral, unbiased, one. This in the sense that all these cultures are, in the last analysis, human cultures, produced by man, and I am as entitled to the English [literary] heritage as I am to the Pharaonic heritage. In other words, all these cultures belong to me in my capacity as a human being. And if you were to ask me to enumerate my favourite works in order, you might find among them an Ancient Egyptian work, a French one, a third that is Arabic and a fourth that is English. When I read I allow my self to love what seems worthy of love, regardless of nationality.
~ Naguib Mahfouz, in an interview with Ibrahim Mansour
More on Mahfouz in Egypt's Al-Ahram Weekly.
Naguib Mahfouz, Literature Nobel