"Ziad Fahmy's Ordinary Egyptians stands out. It provides a model for creative but very solid historical studies. Fahmy assembles rich empirical data from what he calls "media capitalism," incorporating all mass media, including print, performance, broadcast, and recording." --
Raymond W. Baker, The Middle East Journal"Ordinary Egyptians
is a pioneering and provocative work that critically intervenes in the history of revolution and modernity in Egypt. The book contributes much to scholarship on the history of modern Egypt, media, nationalism, and the relationship between technology and culture." -The International Journal of Middle Eastern Studies
"Fahmy's account of the emergence of the Egyptian public sphere from the 1870s through 1919 is richly detailed, theoretically sophisticated, and beautifully written."
-Mark Lynch, Foreign Policy"Ordinary Egyptians is a useful volume that will be received with enthusiasm by not only students of Egyptian history and Middle East studies but also by scholars more generally interested in nationalism and popular culture."- Journal of World History
"An excellent and original book. Fahmy deconstructs commonly held assumptions regarding the formation of nationalism, particularly in its early stages. Its contribution to the field is indispensable." —Israel Gershoni, Tel Aviv University
"Ziad Fahmy's Ordinary Egyptians offers a compelling alternative to an existing historiogrpahy that has mostly explored Egyptian nationalism from the vantage of elite culture."—Aaron Jakes, Arab Studies Journal
"[Fahmy's book] provides a model for creative but very solid historical studies. Fahmy asks an important question: What role did popular culture play in the formation of the modern Egyptian nation? He plunges into very real controversies over the vernacular versus literary Arabic and makes a clear and persuasive, though inevitably controversial case for that incredibly supple and quite beautiful Egyptian spoken dialect."—Raymond William Baker, Middle East Journal
"Fahmy's work is a well-written and compelling argument to expand our thinking on the formation of Egyptian nationalism. By looking at new sources, found in the written and spoken colloquial Egyptian of everyday Egyptians, Fahmy has greatly added to the historiography of this topic. The author also shows that we must move beyond our Western European-centric notions of linguistic cultural nationalism if we are to wholly understand the formation of nationalism in the Arab world."—Kelly M. McFarland, Washington Independent Review of Books
"This is truly an excellent and original book. Fahmy deconstructs commonly held assumptions regarding the formation of nationalism, particularly in its early stages, providing a thought-provoking contribution to our understanding of how agents propelled the formation of nationalism in Egypt in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. Its contribution to the field is indispensable."—Israel Gershoni, Tel Aviv University
About the Author
Ziad Fahmy is Associate Professor of Modern Middle East History at Cornell University.