#LitSummitQatar Opens

This year’s #LitSummitQatar has opened in the middle of the Doha International Book Fair — which features titles from some 360 publishers and events with popular authors such as Qatari novelist Abdulaziz Al Mahmoud, Qatari poet Maryam Al Subaiey, and Irish poet Colette Bryce. The fair’s events are overshadowed by nearby fairs in Sharjah and Abu Dhabi, and hobbled by overlapping the Arab Book Fair in Beirut, but its literary translation summit (#LitSummitQatar) is a highlight:

A photo from each of the three sessions from @QatarUK2013

Translator Nariman Youssef, who is leading one of the English-to-Arabic workshops, has promised to share observations on Twitter. Apparently, on the first day:

Long rather wordy day ends with a Brit embassy reception & a memorable encounter with embassy’s resident cat. #LitSummitQatar #Doha #tired

Discovery of the day: the word for ‘smoke’ in Hungarian sounds very close to “dokhan” which is the word for smoke in Arabic. #LitSummitQatar

Oh and my workshop group translated “Michaelangeloesque” into a rather meaningful phrase in Arabic. #LitSummitQatar #morphologyRocks

Others tweeting #LitSummitQatar include @BQFP and @ScarlettArabic, and one expects @lissiejaquette to get on Twitter sooner or later.

As for the book fair, according to The Peninsular Qatarmanga is one of the most-sought-after genres. Munehiro Anzawa, an attache with the Japanese embassy, told the paper that, “Last year, we sold out 80 percent of books. Many young Qataris love Japanese manga, so this is an opportunity for us to introduce Japanese pop culture here.”