The Egyptian writer and thinker Taha Hussein, the son of Minya Governorate, was born on November 14, 1889. His ideas raised a lot of controversies, so he could leave a mark on the history of Arabic literature. He is one of the most prominent figures in the modern Arab literary movement. He was one of the first to obtain a doctorate in Arabic literature. He was nominated for the Nobel Prize for Literature 14 times.
In this year, 48 years have passed since the departure of the dean of Arabic literature, Taha Hussein, as he died on October 28, 1973, at the age of 84. Leaving a great legacy of literary masterpieces that remained in the memory of history, some of which were turned into screens. In attribution to his passing, we review in the following lines the most prominent novels of the writer Taha Hussein, which were turned into films and television series.
The True Promise
The book “The True Promise” was presented in 1951 in “The Emergence of Islam” directed by Ibrahim Ezz El-Din. The film goes back to the region of the Arabian Peninsula, forty years before the mission of the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ, where ignorance, corruption, and idolatry prevailed. Islam calls for the worship of the One and Only God. The film dealt with the difficulties faced by Islam and the early Muslims, presenting the story of a group of companions, including Warqa bin Nofal, Ammar bin Yasir and Bilal bin Rabah. The film stars Imad Hamdi, Coca, Ahmed Mazhar and Tawfiq Al-Daqn. The same idea was presented in 1993 in a television series bearing the original name of the book, starring Abdullah Ghaith, Hamdi Ghaith, and Suhair Al-Murshidi, and directed by Wafik Wajdi.
The Nightingale’s Prayer
Director Henri Barakat presented the movie “The Nightingale’s Prayer,” based on a story of the same name by writer Taha Hussein. The film, produced in 1959, ranked 14th in the list of the 100 best films in Egyptian cinema history, was nominated for the Berlin Festival award in 1960 and was nominated for the Oscar for Best Foreign Film. The film revolves around “Amna,” played by Faten Hamama, who decides to take revenge on the engineer, played by Ahmed Mazhar, who caused the death of her sister “Hanadi” or Zahra Al-Ala after he took advantage of her love for him and assaulted her, so her family killed her in defense of her honor. “Amna” goes to work as a maid in the engineer’s house to take revenge on him. Still, she was unable to kill him, so she thinks of making him fall in love with her and torturing him, and he actually fell in love with her, but she also fell in love with him. When he proposed to her, she told him the truth and left the house. To find her uncle in front of her trying to kill her, she went back to the engineer to take shelter with him, so he took the bullet instead, and he fell dead.
The novel “Lost Love” was transformed into a successful radio series of the same name, starring Soad Hosni, Sabah, and Omar Sharif in 1969. Then director Henry Barakat presented it in a movie produced in 1970, starring Soad Hosni, Zubaida Tharwat, and Rushdi Abaza. His story revolves around “Leila,” who married and traveled to Tunisia and maintained a relationship with her childhood friend, Samia. Laila returns to Egypt after her husband’s death, so Samia and her husband, Medhat, try to help her, so love slips into the hearts of Medhat and Layla. They enter into a forbidden relationship that Samia discovers later he falls off Mokattam Hill and dies. At the same time, the husband tries to return to his wife, apologizing to find that she has taken their son and left the house.
On the sidelines of the biography
The book “On the sidelines of the biography” is a simplified account of the honorable biography of the Prophet. It was dealt with in a television series in 1978, starring Zahra Al-Ala, Ahmed Mazhar, and Shukri Sarhan. The series shed light on a group of lies that some malicious people tried to attach to Islam to distort its image. The series tried to show the truth, reviewing the biography of the Prophet and the important events and facts that took place in his life.
One of Taha Hussein’s most famous books is an autobiographical book called “The Days,” presented in a movie entitled “The Dark Conqueror” in 1978, starring Mahmoud Yassin and Yehia Al-Fakhrani and directed by Atef Salem. Then it was presented as a television series entitled “The Days” in 1979, starring Ahmed Zaki, Amina Rizk, Yahya Shaheen, and directed by Yahya Alami. The events of the series deal with the life story of the Dean of Arabic Literature, Taha Hussein, since his childhood in his village in Minya Governorate, and his loss of sight at the age of three, through his studies at Al-Azhar University and the Egyptian University, then his travels on a study mission to France, and his marriage to his French wife Suzanne Brisseau, who She had a great role in his life.
The series “Adeeb,” adapted from a novel of the same name by Taha Hussein, is considered a classic of Arab drama and tells the story of “Ibrahim Abdullah,” played by Nour Sharif, a very intelligent young man. Still, he has a congenital defect in his face that makes his appearance seem unacceptable, which causes him many troubles in his life. Ibrahim proposes to one of his female relatives, but she would rather commit suicide than marry him. Ibrahim marries Hamida, the girl who loves him sincerely. He finds himself in front of an opportunity to travel on a mission to study literature in Paris. One of the conditions is that he is unmarried, so he divorces his wife and travels. Still, he suffers from a guilt complex towards his wife, who abandoned her even though she is the only girl who loved him, to spend the rest of his life in confusion and torment. The series was shown in 1982, starring Nour Al-Sharif, Noura, Dalal Abdel Aziz, and Salah Al Saadani, and directed by Yahya Al Alami.