Mountain of Green Tea, The

by Abdullah, Yahya Taher

Yahya Taher Abdullah writes with a poetic vividness that is unblurred by outside influences. His raw material is the harsh life of the peasants of Upper Egypt and of Cairo seen through the eyes of peasants who have migrated there in search of work. Few writers delve so subtly into a society that is strictly bounded by religious and social mores and rigid codes of behaviour. Abdullah deals with a psychological world that has no equivalent in Western life or literature — a society whose members concern themselves with matters of money and personal honour, and where death is ever-present to put an end to their futile endeavours.