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Sexism and holism

Reader comment on item: Palace Walk

Submitted by Earnest Livingood (Netherlands), May 11, 2007 at 10:33

I just finished Palace Walk after a long stay in Egypt with an egyptian friend. The book is dominated not only by Ahmad the father, but also by Allah. I must emphasize how accurately this book depicts the frequency of God comments in daily exchanges in Egypt. When I was there - it was suprising, disturbing, and finally annoying to be constantly barraged with invocations of the "allmighty" in daily affairs. The Egypt of Mahfouz's Palace Walk and the Egypt of today are the same in this sense.

I argue that all western societies come from a similar place of god and male worship, and by looking at this common facet of our histories we may be able to accept our middle eastern neighbors. Particularly, the role of women is distinctly lower than male in these archaic societies - but the psychological comforts women derive from their roles are precisely the same across gender and class throughout the world. Every person seeks comfort in their immediate family and community no matter how odd from an outside perspective. These differences must be respected; first because they are respectable, but also because we are entrapped in the same sort of contextualism.


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