A comic book may have inspired the protests in Egypt, and now those protests have cleared the way for more comics.
Metro by Magdy El Shafee was published in 2008 and banned in Egypt in 2009 for “disturbing public morals,” and while it is a work of fiction, it may have proved too close for comfort with its story of a computer engineer who finds himself surrounded by corruption in various facets of society.
Though banned in Egypt, the graphic novel made its way to Lebanon and the United Arab Emirates, and was even translated into Italian. The protests in Egypt did a lot to pique interest in the United States and elsewhere as well, so the work is now scheduled for translation to English by Metropolitan, a division of McMillan.
El Shafee is hoping that with the new regime in place, his book might also see publication again in Egypt:
“I’m sorry that my novel is available in other countries but not available to my own people,” he said.
El Shafee has appealed to the new Ministry of Culture, but says that because his book was banned by court order, the courts will have to be consulted.
He said: “I’m waiting to hear if the Minister of Culture will allow it to be published again. They will have to consult with the courts. I’m hoping there may be some kind of apology.”
The book is scheduled for release in English in 2012. Portions of Metro were previously published in English by Words Without Borders.
(via Comics Alliance)