Youssef el Sebai

(1917- 1978)

Youssef el Sebai was born in 1917 in
Egypt, his father Mohamed el Sebai was also a man of letters. He graduated from the Staff College as a cavalry officer in 1937, and later taught military history. He ended his military career in 1952 as Director of the Military Museum.

He was General Secretary of three organizations: the UAR higher Council for Arts and Letters, the Afro-Asian Peoples’ Solidarity Movement, and the Afro-Asian Writers’ Solidarity Movement.

In 1965, he was Editor-in-Chief of Akhar Sa"ah magazine. In 1976, he was Chairman of the Board of Directors at Al -Ahram Press Organization. In 1977, he was elected Head of the Egyptian Press Syndicate. Together with
Ihsan Abdel Quddous he founded the Arab Writers Union Between 1933 and 1968, he published over 33 volumes of novels, short stories and plays. He also wrote film scenarios. In his writing he combined knowledge of and affection for the popular quarters of Cairo.

Sebai wrote about the right of the people of
Palestine to self-determination and statehood, nevertheless he was assassinated in February 18, 1978 by an extremist Palestinian group in Nicosia, Cyprus, where he was attending a conference on peace and security.

Read Arabic Short Stories

References: Arabic Short Stories, ed. Mahmoud Manzalaou, 1985, American University of Cairo Press.
Egypt State Information Service