Miramar Summary & Study Guide

This Study Guide consists of approximately 45 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Miramar.
This section contains 409 words
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Miramar Summary & Study Guide Description

Miramar Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:

This detailed literature summary also contains Topics for Discussion and a Free Quiz on Miramar by Naguib Mahfouz.

Miramar by Naguib Mahfouz uses four narrator to tell the story, each from his own perspective of how a beautiful peasant girl, serving as maid in the Miramar Pension unintentionally turns the establishment upside down. Although victimized, she alone is a noble character.

Octogenarian Amer Wagdi, a bitter ex-journalist, moves into Mme. Mariana's Miramar Pension, hoping to live out his days in peace. This appears unlikely as he meets sexagenarian Tolba Marzuq, his ideological opposite and a fellow boarder. Both know Mariana from long ago. A beautiful and innocent young peasant woman, Zohra Salama, is hired as a maid. Younger boarders join them: Sarhan al-Beheiry, Hosny Allam, and Mansour Bahy, and they become acquainted during a party preceding the famed singer Umm Kulthum's monthly radio broadcast.

Sarhan, who has tired of Safeya Barakat, a live-in lover, covertly and successfully courts Zohra. Rumors spread among the boarders that Zohra is a prostitute and Mariana her pimp. Safeya sneaks into the pension after the final break-up with Sarhan, causes a scene, and Hosny escorts her away. Zohra begins taking reading lessons from Aleya Muhammad, an attractive teacher whose family also lives in the building. Zohra's relatives fail to force her to return home. Mahmoud Abu-Abbas, Sarhan's friend and a newspaper vendor, proposes marriage to Zohra but is refused. When Sarhan drops Zohra for the tutor, he and Mahmoud have a fist-fight. When Hosny tries to rape Zohra, he and Sarhan also have a fist-fight.

When Sarhan and Mansour, who has wooed away from her imprisoned husband an old flame, Doreya, only to tire of her and dump her, also fight, Mariana expels Sarhan. Mansour, grown psychotic, vows to kill him. After following Sarhan to a bar and watching him drink heavily, Mansour follows him into the street and believes that he kicks the unconscious man to death. Word of this spreads to the Miramar. In fact, Sarhan that night has learned that a black market scheme in which he is involved with friend Ali Bakir has fallen apart. In desperation at the thought of being arrested, Sarhan commits suicide.

Sobering in the morning, Mansour turns himself in to the police for the murder, but the autopsy proves that he is innocent. No one knows what will come of him. Mariana fires Zohra for bringing bad luck to the Miramar. Amer tenderly urges her to build on the sufferings that she has endured and make a good life for herself.

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This section contains 409 words
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