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The Mummy$
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Doris V. Sutherland

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781911325956

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: February 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781911325956.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM LIVERPOOL SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.liverpool.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Liverpool University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in LSO for personal use.date: 23 September 2021

The Egypt of The Mummy

The Egypt of The Mummy

(p.55) Chapter 4. The Egypt of The Mummy
The Mummy

Doris V. Sutherland

Liverpool University Press

This chapter assesses how The Mummy (1932) approaches ancient Egypt and the ways in which it reflects contemporary attitudes towards the place and era. Although set almost entirely in the Cairo of 1932, The Mummy shows little concern with twentieth-century Egypt; indeed, many of the principal characters are not even Egyptian. In The Mummy, the Egypt of the 1930s is treated merely as a midway point between Western civilisation and the era of the Pharaohs: a land of museums, excavations, archaeologists, and the occasional revived mummy. The chapter then studies how the spectre of Tutankhamun permeates the film. The Mummy appears to have lifted basic details of Tutankhamun's life and worked them into an almost entirely fictitious story. With its themes of death, resurrection, and the afterlife, The Mummy also frequently touches upon ancient Egyptian religion. Finally, there is the phenomenon that originally prompted Universal Pictures to head to Egypt for inspiration: the cursed tomb.

Keywords:   The Mummy, ancient Egypt, twentieth-century Egypt, Tutankhamun, Egyptian religion, cursed tomb

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