Young Adult Lit/Crit

April 21, 2008

Censorship of New Graphic Novel, THE METRO, by Cairo Police

Filed under: Censorship and Related Isseus — sunyprof @ 11:19 am

As I think I may have shared with some of you, I’m going to be teaching a graduate research course in Cairo in June. My grad students will be international teachers.

In my investigation of contemporary Egyptian literature, I was interested to see this notice of the publication of the first adult graphic novel,* THE METRO, in Egypt and then soon after to read at the Words without Borders site (well worth investigating) that all copies of the novel have been seized from the activist publishers’ office for “disturbing public morals.”

You can read the press release at The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information. KES

*At this site, you can see/read an excerpt from the novel which reads right to left.


  1. The rusty nail gets hammered down…

    Wow, Karen. Sometimes I am totally blown away by how connected you are to this sort of thing. It’s like you’re able to step outside of the mainstream and see all the books being plucked from the swirling water of word.

    Before this class I was aware of censorship, I thought, but now I’m way WAY more in tune with the power of language. My favorite part of the excerpt from THE METRO was when the protagonist says, “You have to make even an honest robbery dirty.” Funny stuff. Where do I get my hands on a copy?


    Comment by Joyce — April 21, 2008 @ 8:05 pm

  2. Dr. Stearns: I will be anxious to hear about your experiences in Cairo. How will you deal with the censorship, which seems as bad, if not worse, than here in the U.S.? From the description and the excerpts from METRO, it seems plausible that the real government was threatened by the uprising that characters committed, due to actions that corrupt officials took. A very interesting story line, but nothing terribly new, so I am slightly surprised that this was censored. What is the political situation in Cairo? This must have had an impact on this decision.


    Comment by mandygrl101 — April 22, 2008 @ 9:09 pm

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