The Sawiris Foundation for Social Development announced the winners of the 16th Sawiris Cultural Award on Friday.
This Edition is considered the largest in the history of the award in terms of the number of submitted works. A total of 1263 literary works were submitted to various fields of the award.
This year, 12 young and established writers received awards for their distinguished work in the fields including novel, short story, screenplay, playwriting, and literary criticism.
Dr. Iman Yahya won the best novel award - under the established writers’ contest - for her novel 'Al-Zawga Al-Mexicia' (The Mexican Wife), published by Dar Al-Shorouk. Meanwhile, the award for best short story collection, written by an established writer, went to Samir El-Fil for his collection 'Autobis 77' (Bus Line 77) that was published by the Egyptian General Book Authority.
The award for best novel written by a young writer went to Ahmed Al-Fakharany for his novel 'Bayasat Al-Shawam' published by Dar Al-Ain. The same novel also won the translation award, which was added to the award’s branches this year in an attempt to encourage contemporary literary excellence and introduce creative young writers to readers outside the borders of the Arab region. The literary award includes translating the winning novel into English, covering all contracting costs with a publishing house for the translation, printing and the publishing of the novel.
As for second-place in the young writers’ novel contest, the award went to Ahmed Al-Morsi for his novel 'What Remains of the Sun' published by Dar Al-Bashir.
The first-place prize for best short story collection made by a young writer went to Gilan Al-Shamsi for her short story collection 'As if the story is missing' published by Al-Ain Publishing House. In second-place, Muhammad Faraj won with his short story collection 'Long Term Plans' published by Dar Al-Ain.
Regarding the best screenplay award, established writer Samar Taher won for her screenplay of the movie 'Al-Nazeel' (The Inmate), while Paula Tadros Thabet won the young writers' contest for his screenplay of 'Abdullah'.
In the field of playwriting, the first-place award went to Faisal Rizk for his play 'Hakawy Al-Aragouz' (Tales of the puppet), while second-place went to Mina Bebbawy for his play 'Bernatanya'.
As for the award for best submitted work in the field of literary criticism, it was awarded ex aequo to Sameh Fayez for his book 'Stories about Reading' published by the Egyptian-Lebanese House and to Professor Abdel-Nasser Hilal for his book 'The Visual Turn - from Text to Speech” published by the Egyptian General Book Authority.
In order to encourage young writers, financial rewards are also granted for the shortlisted nominated work.
Granted in the novel contest: 'Random Arrangements' by Dunya Kamal Al-Qalash, 'Ahmar Larang' (Blood Oranges) by Charles Akl, and 'Camelia's Ghosts' By Nora Naji.
With regard to the short story collection, the grants went to: 'Sleep Thieves' by Amjad Al-Sabban, 'Visions of the Holy City' by Omaima Subhy, and 'A Report on Al-Refaeia' by Muhammad Al-Fuly.
In the screenplay category: 'The Ghazala who fled the schoolyard' by Ahmed Ihab Abdel-Warith, 'Where Did Shaker Abaza Go?' by Mahmoud Hassan Abdel-Alim, 'Hamlet' by Al-Sayed Abdel-Nabi, 'Kilo 35' by Mahmoud Ahmed Abd-Rahman.
This year, six jury committees of prominent writers; filmmakers; critics and drama professors in Egypt participated in the evaluation of the work that was submitted and selection of the winners.
Literature Jury (Section One - Established Writers): Prof. Rania Fathy (Committee Rapporteur), Prof. Hussein Hammouda, Writer and Novelist Subhi Moussa, Writer and Journalist Karima Kamal, as well as Writer and Novelist Mansoura Ezz El-Din.
Literature Jury (Section Two - Young Writers): Prof. Hala Kamal (Committee Rapporteur), Writer and Novelist Reem Bassiouni, Writer and Novelist Sahar Al-Moji, Writer and Journalist Muhammad Shair along with Writer and Journalist Hisham Aslan.
Screenplay Jury (First Branch - Senior Writers): Director and Producer Marianne Khoury (Committee Rapporteur), Film Director Dr. Ahmed Maher, Film Director Dr. Hassan Issa, Prof. Salma Mubarak, and Film Critic Issam Zakaria.
Screenplay Jury (Second branch - Young Writers): Film Director Hala Jalal (Committee Rapporteur), Film Director Ahmed Fawzi Saleh, Prof. Ashraf Rajeh, Film Director Amir Ramses, and screenwriter Maryam Naoum.
Playwriting Jury: Theatre Director Hassan Al-Greetly (Committee Rapporteur), Prof. Amal Mazhar, Prof. Dalia Al-Shayal, Professor Dina Amin, and Theatre Director Tariq Al-Douairi.
Literary Criticism Jury: Prof. Faten Morsi (Committee Rapporteur), Prof. Sahar Abdel-Hakim, Prof. Mohamed Badawy, Prof. Hoda Ayyad, and Prof. Walid Al-Hamamsy.