Egyptian imaginaries of resistance: Cinematic remembrance of the Suez crisis

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Current politics in Egypt has revived the idea of a strong connection between the army, the Egyptian people and its leaders. This imaginary was introduced by Egyptian cinema about the time of the 1952 revolution. In the early days of national independence, the Suez crisis of 1956 in particular holds the symbols and images needed to create the set of semantics supporting this imaginary. Based on theories on national and postcolonial imaginaries, I analyse two Egyptian films on the Suez crisis: Port Said from 1957 and Maliqat al-Bihar (Giants of the Sea) from 1960 including shorter references to other films from the period. By examining the postcolonial semantics of these films, I identify three elements that together retell the Egyptian nation. First, the Suez crisis is pictured as eliminating the colonial enemies due to the actions of strong leaders. Second, a pan-Arab alliance is installed. Third, enemies from within are disconnected from the true Egyptian assessed by loyalty to the nation. The result is a strong imaginary of the correlation between the army, people and in particular its leaders.
TidsskriftJournal of Arab & Muslim Media Research
Udgave nummer2
Sider (fra-til)221-236
Antal sider16
StatusUdgivet - 31 dec. 2021

ID: 287639960