December 2015: Global Arab and Arabic Literature Events Calendar

Arab and Arabic literary events in some form of translation:

December 1

Continuation of the Beirut International Arab Book Fair (Beirut, Lebanon)

Set to run through December 10 at the Beirut International Exhibition and Leisure Center (BIEL) in downtown Beirut. Many talks and signings, including Mazen Maarouf on Dec 1. More here.

Opening day photos from the Kuwait News Agency.

Opening day photos from the Kuwait News Agency.

December 2

Opening of the Doha International Book Fair (Doha, Qatar)

Runs through December 12. More here.

Nomad Crossroads: Algerian Poetry Now (NYC, USA)

“Visiting from Algiers, Samira Negrouche will read a selection of her poems in French, with English translations read by Anna Moschovakis. The readings will be followed by a conversation with Pierre Joris and Omar Berrada, on her work and on the contemporary poetic landscape in Algeria and the Maghreb.” More here.

“The Postcolony in the Cold War: The CIA, the Congress for Cultural Freedom, and the Fate of ‘Arabic Literary Genius'” (Berlin, Germany)

“On December 2, Dr. Elizabeth M. Holt, Postdoctoral Fellow, Freie Universität Berlin through the Forum Transregionale Studien’s Europe in the Middle East// the Middle East in Europe Program, and Assistant Professor of Arabic, Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY will give a talk on “The Postcolony in the Cold War: The CIA, the Congress for Cultural Freedom, and the Fate of ‘Arabic Literary Genius'” in the frame of the Faculty Colloquium Series.” More here.

December 3

Reading by Algerian Poet Samira Negrouche (NYC, USA)

Samira will be giving a reading the next day in Brooklyn, along with Kristen Case, Megan Fernandes, Anna Moschovakis, and Sarah Riggs at Berl’s Brooklyn Poetry Shop. Thursday, December 3rd, 8pm. 126A Front Street, Dumbo, Brooklyn.

December 4

The Contemporary Arab Novelist Probing the Self and the Other (Freiburg, Germany)

“A Contrapuntal Study of Identity, Sexuality, and Fundamentalism.” More here. 

December 5

Lena Merhej Signs French Edition of Mrabba w Laban (Paris, France)

L’IMA accueillera samedi 5 décembre Lena Merhej pour une séance de dédicaces de son ouvrage “Laban et confiture ou comment ma mère est devenue libanaise”, une bande dessinée qui paraît aujourd’hui en français aux éditions Alifbata. More here.

“Words Adorned: Andalusian Poetry and Music” (Bryn Mawr, USA)

“The compositions will be…featuring Al-Bustan Takht Ensemble with The Crossing, a Philadelphia-based award-winning Western choir, and solo vocalist Dalal Abu Amneh. The repertoire will also feature four popular muwashshahat from the Levant and North Africa (by composers Rahbani Brothers from Lebanon and Taher Guizani from Tunisia).” More here.

Musical Performance: Alwan Ensemble Performs Classical Poetry of Omar al Khayyam and Ahmed Shawqi (NYC, USA)

Lead vocalist George Ziadeh & String Quartet Perform Classical Poetry: Rubaiyat al Khayyam and the poem of Ahmed Shawqi سلوا كؤوس الطلا (What is to be found in the Color of the Urn). More here.

December 7

HEKAYAH THE STORY | حِكايه (Abu Dhabi, UAE)

“From Nabati poetry to spoken word to hip-hop, a multiple-artist celebration of heritage in poetry, prose and song, drawing from the diverse communities of theUAE. An exciting line-up of performers will honor National Day through words and music, selected through a collaborative curatorial process.” Artists include Afra Atiq, Dima Khatib, Farah Chamma, Hassan AlNajjar, and others. More here.

December 8

Spectators to their Own History: Sonallah Ibrahim and Mohamad Malas, Moscow 1973. (Marburg, Germany)

A seminar by Margaret Litvin for Figures of Thought: Turning Points, Cultural Practices, and Social Change in the Arab World, Center for Near and Middle Eastern Studies, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Germany. More here.

December 10

Discussion of the Entries for the 2015 Saif Ghobash Banipal Prize for Arabic Literary Translation (London, England)

There are 29 entries to discuss, 27 of which will be available to flip through at the event. A number of excellent translations on this year’s list. More here.

December 11

Opening of the Naguib Mahfouz Museum (Cairo, Egypt)

On the 104th anniversary of the Nobel Prize winner’s birth. More here. 

December 12

Naguib Mahfouz Medal for Literature (Cairo, Egypt)

Presented in Oriental Hall at the American University in Cairo’s Tahrir Campus at 6 p.m. More here.

December 13

War Songs: The Poetry of Antara ibn Shaddad (Abu Dhabi, UAE)

“Antara ibn Shaddad was the ultimate pre-Islamic hero: a warrior feared by all, lover of Ablah whom he could never win, and a poet with a unique heroic voice. In an evening of recital and conversation, Professor James Montgomery leads a discussion with the Editorial Board of the Library of Arabic Literature about the challenges of translating Antarah into English for a twenty-first century audience. Selections from the poetry of Antarah will be read in Arabic and English translation.” More here.

December 14

La Culture, Une Aide Hunamitaire? Recontre Avec Leila Shahid (Paris, France)

“Un débat avec Leïla Shahid (ancienne ambassadrice de Palestine en Europe), Raven Ruëll et Jacques Delcuvellerie animée par Olivia Snaije, journaliste culture qui écrit sur le Moyen-Orient.” More here.

December 17

War Songs: The Poetry of Antara ibn Shaddad (Dubai, UAE)

“Antara ibn Shaddad was the ultimate pre-Islamic hero: a warrior feared by all, lover of Ablah whom he could never win, and a poet with a unique heroic voice. In an evening of recital and conversation, Professor James Montgomery leads a discussion with the Editorial Board of the Library of Arabic Literature about the challenges of translating Antarah into English for a twenty-first century audience. Selections from the poetry of Antarah will be read in Arabic and English translation.” More here.

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