New release: Shame from both Shores by Ezzat El-Kamhawy

Ahram Online, Tuesday 20 Sep 2011

Ezzat El-Kamhawy relates sad stories of Egyptians risking everything to reach Europe by sea, and reveals the desperation felt by Egyptian youth in the Mubarak era

A’ar min al-dafatayn (Shame from both Shores) by Ezzat El-Kamhawy, Cairo: Dar Al-Ain, 2011.

Ezzat El-Kamhawy had the idea for his latest book when his nephew died trying to cross the sea to Italy illegally. The book isn’t an exact a retelling of the story, as it would be too much of a burden, but El-Kamhawy did lots of research, travelling to Italy four times during 2010, funded by the Arab Fund for Culture and Art.

El-Kamhawy says the reason behind both the Egyptian and Tunisian revolutions is the same reason these youth tried to escape from their countries: a small mafia controlling the economy and disabling its people’s capabilities.

According to El-Kamhawy, if democracy was successfully established in Arab countries, the shame of drowning in the Mediterranean would become history, and Europe would recognise that dealing with free neighbours is better and cheaper than dealing with rulers who are actually ‘agents’ and don’t even deserve the term ‘dictators’.

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