Nawal El Saadawi: Trailblazing Egyptian female writer dies, aged 89

Renowned Egyptian woman, psychologist and writer Nawal El Saadawi has died of age-related health problems in Cairo at the age of 89, officials have reported.

Ms El Saadawi’s writings have been the subject of much controversy for many years, in a very conservative society.

She was born in 1931 in a small town on the Nile delta, just north of the country’s capital, Cairo. She was one of nine children born to a government official father and mother from a wealthy background.

After studying medicine at Cairo University, as well as Columbia University, New York, Ms. El Saadawi worked as a doctor before specializing in psychiatry. She went on to lecture at universities and has written both in books and in newspapers.

She went on to become director of public health in Egypt but was dismissed from the Ministry of Health after publishing her book, Women and Sex.