Veteran writer Anis Mansour succumbs to pneumonia at 87
Mansour, best known for his novel Around the World in 200 Days and his daily column in Al-Ahram newspaper, passed away on Friday in Cairo
Sherif Tarek, Friday 21 Oct 2011
The writer and columnist, Anis Mansour, has passed away aged 87.
The Mansoura-born journalist was pronounced dead at El-Safa Hospital shortly after being admitted to an intensive care facility suffering from pneumonia on Friday.
His funeral service is to be held on Saturday at the Omar Makram Mosque.
Throughout his career, Mansour wrote a multitude of varied books, some of which were among the bestsellers of the past four decades in Egypt.
One of his most famous and successful books was Around the World in 200 Days. Published in the 1960s, it chronicled his travels in many countries, such as India, Japan and the USA, and his meeting with the Dalai Lama.
Some of his books looked at metaphysical phenomena and powers, such as the alleged curse of the pharaohs.
Mansour scooped numerous literary accolades. In 1981, he won the State Award for Literature, administered by the Supreme Council of Culture. Twenty years later, he claimed the Mubarak Award for Literature.
Mansour graduated from the philosophy section of the Faculty of Arts at Cairo University.
For a while, he taught philosophy at Ain Shams University and his philosophical studies clearly had an effect on his writing.
Not only was Mansour a prominent author, but also an influential journalist. He worked for the two largest state-run newspapers, Al-Akhbar and Al-Ahram, spending the second half of his professional career at the latter.
In his final days, Mansour was still writing a daily column for Al-Ahram as well as El-Sharq El-Awsat (Middle East) newspaper.
During his journalistic career he was editor-in-chief of several renowned publications, including October and Akher Sa’aa magazines.
In the 1970s he was a close friend and supporter of President Anwar Sadat and his policies, a relationship reflected in many of his columns.