Ahmed Naji

Rotten Evidence


In February 2016, Ahmed Naji was sentenced to two years in prison for "violating public decency", after an excerpt of his novel Using Life reportedly caused a reader to experience heart palpitations. Naji ultimately served ten months of that sentence, in a group cellblock in Cairo's Tora Prison.

Rotten Evidence is a chronicle of those months. through Naji's writing, the world of Egyptian prison comes into vivid focus, with its cigarette-based economy, homemade chess sets, and well-groomed fixers. Naji's storytelling is lively and uncompromising, filled with rare insights into both the mundane and the grand questions he confronts.

How does one secure a steady supply of fresh vegetables without refrigeration? Write and revise a novel in a single notebook? Make a wall hook out of a razor? Fight boredom? And, most crucially, how does one make sense of a senseless oppression: finding oneself in prison for the act of writing fiction.

Genuine and defiant, this book stands as a testament to the power of the creative mind in the face of authoritarian censorship.

Über die Autorin / über den Autor:

Ahmed Naji is a writer, journalist, documentary filmmaker, and criminal. His novel Using Life (2014) made him the first writer in Egyptian history to be imprisoned for offending public morality. He is also the author of the novels Tigers, Uninvited (2020) and Happy Endings (2022). Naji has won several prizes, including a Dubai Press Club Arab Journalism Award and a PEN/Barbey Freedom to Write Award. He was a City of Asylum Fellow at the Beverly Rogers, Carol C. Harter Black Mountain Institute in Las Vegas, where he still lives with his family.

Preis: CHF 31.90
Sprache: Englisch (aus dem Arabischen von Katharine Halls)
Art: Broschiertes Buch
Erschienen: 2023 (2019)
Verlag: McSweeney's
ISBN: 978-1-952119-83-5
Masse: 269 S.