This article explores the television adaptation of Sonallah Ibrahim’s novel Zaat, arguing that the series provides us with an interesting representation of the various ways in which national projects in Egypt are gendered. It adds to feminist debates around nationalism, capitalism, and gender. In particular, the focus on the intimate in Zaat reveals how political projects are depicted in the domestic sphere through the lens of women’s work. The article explores two themes: one, the increasing financial pressure and its effects on constructs of masculinity and femininity, and two, the steady decay of infrastructure and social services and how it renders middle-class life an impossibility. The article argues that by focusing on the intimate, Ibrahim’s novel and the TV adaptation both reveal the various forms of work women perform and make use of women’s work to critique or celebrate national projects.

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