Abdel Nasser

Associate Professor and Chair
Department of English and Comparative Literature


Brief Biography

Tahia Abdel Nasser is an associate professor of English and Comparative Literature at the American University in Cairo.  She is the author of Literary Autobiography and Arab National Struggles (Edinburgh University Press, 2017) on Arab autobiography in Arabic, English, and French. Her current book manuscript examines Arab and Latin American literary and cultural exchange in the twentieth- and twenty-first centuries. Another book project focuses on literary and cultural ties between Palestine and Latin America.  She is the editor of Nasser My Husband (American University in Cairo Press, 2013). Her articles and translations have appeared in Comparative Literature Studies, Yearbook of Comparative Literature, Journal of Postcolonial Writing, Journal of Arabic Literature, Alif: Journal of Comparative Poetics, Commonwealth Essays and Studies, Dictionary of African Biography (Oxford UP, 2011), Majallat al-Dirasat al-Filastiniyah, Jusoor, Mahmoud Darwish: The Adam of Two Edens (Syracuse UP, 2001), and The Poetry of Arab Women: A Contemporary Anthology (Interlink Books, 2001)Her short stories and creative nonfiction have appeared in New World Writing, Rigorous, and elsewhere.

Her research interests include twentieth- and twenty-first century literature, postcolonial literature, Arabic and Latin American literatures, and European literature.  She holds a PhD in English Language and Literature from Cairo University (2007), and an MA (1999) and a BA (summa cum laude, 1996) in English and Comparative Literature from the American University in Cairo.  She teaches courses on contemporary literature, literatures from Africa, Asia, and Latin America, global Anglophone literatures, and Arab and Latin American literary encounters.

In 2014, she was awarded an Erasmus Mundus Fellowship at the Institute for Latin American Studies of Freie Universität Berlin.  At AUC, she was the director of graduate studies in the Department of English and Comparative Literature (2015–19), the chair of the Naguib Mahfouz Medal for Literature (2012–2018), and the interim director of the Center for Translation Studies (201213).  She has served on the Forum on Arabic Literature and Culture at the Modern Language Association (MLA) (2015–2019).

  • Books

    Literary Autobiography and Arab National Struggles. Edinburgh University Press, 2017. Paperback 2019.

    Abdel Nasser, Tahia Gamal. Nasser My Husband. Translated by Shereen Mosaad and edited by Tahia Abdel Nasser, The American University in Cairo Press, 2013.

    Articles and Book Chapters

    “Translation and North African Letters.” A Companion to African Literatures, edited by Olakunle George, Wiley-Blackwell, 2021. 151–164. 

    “Latin America and North Africa: Latin American Iconography in Arabic Literature.” América Latina - Africa del Norte – España: Traslaciones culturales, intelectuales y literarias, edited by Stephanie Fleischmann and Ana Nenadovic, Iberoamericana Vervuert, 2020. 221–232.

    “Translations of Nasser between the Public and the Private.” In the Shoes of the Other: Interdisciplinary Essays in Translation Studies from Cairo, edited by Samia Mehrez, Kotob Khan, 2019. 65–74.

    “The Mirrors of Palestine.” Majallat al-Dirasat al-Filastiniyah 119 (2019): 82–86.

    “Palestine and Latin America: Lina Meruane’s Volverse Palestina and Nathalie Handal’s La Estrella Invisible.Journal of Postcolonial Writing 54.2 (2018): 239–253.

    “Between Latin America and the Arab World: Rodrigo Rey Rosa and Alberto Ruy-Sánchez in Morocco.” Re-Mapping World Literature: Writing, Book Markets, and Epistemologies between Latin America and the Global South, edited by Gesine Müller, Benjamin Loy, and Jorge Locane, De Gruyter, 2018. 45–60. 

    “Anglophone Arab Autobiography and the Postcolonial Middle East: Najla Said and Hisham Matar.” The Edinburgh Companion to the Postcolonial Middle East, edited by Karim Mattar and Anna Ball, Edinburgh University Press, 2018. 349–361.

    “Arab and Latin American Literature: Mourid Barghouti, Najla Said, and Lina Meruane in Palestine.” Commonwealth Essays and Studies 40.1 (Spring 2017): 63–76.

    “Revolution and Cien años de soledad in Naguib Mahfouz’s Layālī alf laylah.”  Comparative Literature Studies 52.3 (2015): 91–113.

    “Revolutionary Poetics and Translation.” Translating Dissent: Voices from and with the Egyptian Revolution, edited by Mona Baker, Routledge, 2015. 107–122.

    “Between Exile and Elegy, Palestine and Egypt: Mourid Barghouti’s Poetry and Memoirs.”  Journal of Arabic Literature 45 (2014): 244–264.

    “The Arabic Archive of Magic Realism.” Alif: Journal of Comparative Poetics 31 (2011): 184–215.

    “African Autobiography: The Contribution of Women.” Alif: Journal of Comparative Poetics 22 (2002): 58–75.       

    “Language and Identity in Yasmine Zahran’s A Beggar at Damascus Gate.” Alif: Journal of Comparative Poetics 20 (2000): 103–116.  

Research Interest
  • Comparative, postcolonial, and world literature
  • Arabic and Latin American literatures
  • Twentieth- and twenty-first century literature
  • Global South networks
  • Anglophone and Francophone literatures