Egypt's Beer: Stella, Identity, and the Modern State

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University of Texas Press, Dec 15, 2019 - History - 296 pages

Although alcohol is generally forbidden in Muslim countries, beer has been an important part of Egyptian identity for much of the last century. Egypt’s Stella beer (which only coincidentally shares a name with the Belgian beer Stella Artois) became a particularly meaningful symbol of the changes that occurred in Egypt after British Occupation.

Weaving cultural studies with business history, Egypt’s Beer traces Egyptian history from 1880 to 2003 through the study of social, economic, and technological changes that surrounded the production and consumption of Stella beer in Egypt, providing an unparalleled case study of economic success during an era of seismic transformation. Delving into archival troves—including the papers of his grandfather, who for twenty years was CEO of the company that produced Stella—Omar D. Foda explains how Stella Beer achieved a powerful presence in all popular forms of art and media, including Arabic novels, songs, films, and journalism. As the company’s success was built on a mix of innovation, efficient use of local resources, executive excellence, and shifting cultural dynamics, this is the story of the rise of a distinctly Egyptian “modernity” seen through the lens of a distinctly Egyptian brand.

 

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Contents

Stella and the Egyptian Beer Industry 19201940
28
The Egyptian Beer Industrys
60
Selling Beer in the Time
77
Stella and the United Arab Republic 19581961
105
How Stella Became the Beer of
125
The Infitah and the Beer Business
145
Stella 19852003
163
Conclusion
187
Bibliography
219
Index
243
Copyright

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About the author (2019)

Omar D. Foda is a visiting assistant professor of history at Towson University. He holds a PhD in Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations from the University of Pennsylvania, and his work has appeared in several journals and volumes, including The Birth of the Arab Citizen and the Changing of the Middle East.

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