Al Masry Al Youm: The Bidoun Library at Townhouse

Q: Where can you find a Palestinian children’s book from 1974 titled Home, Arabic comic books from the last 60 years (including the current and innovative graphic-novel magazine Samandal), Yara al-Sherbini’s Sheikh ‘n’ Vac, based on her stand-up comedy routine, and more?

A: At Townhouse Gallery (in Cairo), now until November 17. After that, the traveling Bidoun Library will head to the Serpentine Gallery’s Center for Possible Studies in London.

According to Al Masry Al Youm:

The Bidoun Library, a mobile, diverse collection of over 700 books, stories and magazines, was flown to Cairo after a two-month long stay at the New Museum in New York City. It is a constantly evolving collection of books and ephemeral publications on cultural production in the Middle East produced during the past sixty years.

Download a PDF of the library’s offerings.

NYTimes: Nathalie Handal’s Love and Strange Horses

Reviewer Dana Jenkins is definitely a fan of Palestinian-American poet Nathalie Handal’s newest collection, remarking:

As I read “Love and Strange Horses” — a book that trembles with belonging (and longing) and love and sex — I almost felt as if I were cheating on my wife.

Jenkins also wrote:

Ms. Handal is also funny and epigrammatic. In “Why Men Die Young” she writes:

Because they can’t stop dancing when they should be sleeping

Because they listen to Fleetwood Mac when the president’s speaking

Because they buy houses they can’t afford

and cars with names they can’t pronounce.

The Guardian: “Google is to start translating poetry”

This is definitely the most ridiculous poetry news of the week. The Center for the Art of Translation put their reaction thus:

Google: “We are now a translator of poetry.”

Poetry: “Ummm . . . no.”


Al Masry Al Youm: “[Egyptian] Govt censors reject controversial movie script for second time”

What’s a day without some censorship news? I like the report for this line:

He went on to assert that state censors generally approved movie scripts without amendment.

Generally means…more than 50 pecent of the time? Sixty?

Meanwhile, shooting of the film version of the popular book 1/4 Gram, by Essam Youssef, continues.