Letter from Issa J. Boullata on ‘Banipal 45: Writers from Palestine’

Celebrated translator and scholar Issa J. Boullata wrote in about Banipal’s 45th issue:

Completing 15 years of publishing, Banipal 45–Writers from Palestine—(Winter 2012) is a gem of literary journalism. In previous years, Banipal has accustomed its increasing number of readers worldwide to first-class English translations from modern Arabic literature in all genres, and has periodically offered a special issue on one Arab country or another with in-depth concentration.

This particular issue with writers from Palestine is one of the best special issues, not only because it deals with writers from all regions of the country, regardless of present political regimes, but also because its chosen texts in translation give one of the clearest reflections of a nation that has been pleading for attention, love, and recognition in a heedless world for a long time now.

In this issue of Banipal, young new voices and older known ones equally open their hearts to the world in compelling poetry, beautiful fiction, and passionate thought — leaving the reader at the end with the satisfying feeling of deeply knowing a cherished part of modern Arabic literature, perhaps not encountered earlier anywhere.

Banipal is to be congratulated on its valuable achievements, especially as a window into Arabic literature that shows the human aspect of the Arab people to the world.

To Banipal’s editor and publisher, I offer my very best wishes for many more years of further success.

Issa J. Boullata
Dr. Issa J. Boullata, Emeritus Professor of Arabic Literature, Institute of Islamic Studies, McGill University,Montreal, Quebec, CANADA.

Editor’s note: Selections from issue 45 are available online (below). You can also buy digital or paper copies of the magazine at the Banipal website. And you can read more from Dr. Boullata; his “10 rules and 10 translations” are here on ArabLit.

More from Banipal:


Eyad Barghuthy – A short story A FATEFUL MEAL
Isra’a Kalash – A third short story PERHAPS
Rabee Jaber – Online Only – An excerpt from the novel ‘The Birds of Holiday Inn’


Asma’a Azaizeh – Poems continued from Banipal 45
Dalia Taha – Selected Poems continued from Banipal 45
Marwan Makhoul – Selected Poems continued from Banipal 45
Reem Ghanayem – Selected Poems continued from Banipal 45
Yousef el-Qedra – Poems continued from Banipal 45


Marzuq Halabi – The continuation of Last Page
Mohammad Bakri – Interview continued online