New Online Venue for Arabic Literature (in Arabic and English)

This week, Jadaliyya debuted its new culture section, promising updates every Monday.

The online magazine, associated with the Arab Studies Journal, launched last year. But it was this spring that the website blossomed, with coverage of uprisings and developments across the Arabic-writing world.

The site has had “culture” all along, and has featured a few a translations and reviews. But the new section promises weekly updates, and:

an open space for creative, original, and critical texts about culture(s) in Arabic and English. We seek to support cultural expression in a wide variety of sites and contexts, media and genres.

The first week’s culture section includes:

It’s quite an eclectic start, but definitely interesting. The chapter from Ghalib Halasa’s Sultana makes for the most compelling (and disturbing) read. Sultana, listed at #40 on the Arab Writers Union’s “top 105” novels of the 20th century, was published in 1987 but has not been translated into English.

Halasa died in 1989.

The Jordanian author—who also lived in Baghdad, Cairo, Beirut and Damascus—published seven novels, but has been little-translated. One of his short stories, “A Birthday,” is online courtesy of Banipal.

Other culture-review news:

The new Los Angeles Review of Books has soft-launched.  According to Media Bistro, “The complete Los Angeles Review of Books site, launching in late 2011, will be much more complex and multidimensional, featuring reviews and essays, reader discussion forums, video of author interviews and events, an IMDB style archival reference database for the book world, and much more, taking full advantage of the latest web technologies. Reviews of fiction, nonfiction, poetry, memoir, philosophy, art, science fiction, young adult, children’s and more, will have multiple links leading through the site, allowing readers to follow their inclinations into new territories, finding new books, authors, and genres.”

No specific tip of the hat to world literature or literature in translation.

Want to be a part of Jadaliyya culture?

If you would like to contribute, see their call-for-posts here.