"To write about  is to foreground it yet again; not to write about it is to consign oneself to live with the illusion of its insignificance. . . . The way out of this double bind is to do both at the same time: this may explain why the 67 war is invoked in the title of the novel but is almost entirely absent from the preoccupations of the narrative."
"Winter yields a Spring / Spring’s dreams are ruined by / Summer. / Summer, without farewell / cedes authority / to Autumn"
"I must have been very young at the time. While I don’t remember exactly how old I was, I do remember that when people saw me with my grandfather they would pat me on the head and give my cheek a pinch – things they didn’t do to my grandfather. "
"THERE IS NO FEE FOR SUBMISSIONS."
"When it turns to a blaze, / Nura turns to a breeze; / making the rounds, / offering the starving a bite, / the thirsty a sip[.]"
Brad Fox called in from lockdown in Peru to read from -- and discuss -- his translation (or recovery? or adaptation?) of Abu Dulaf's "Song of the Banu Sasan."
"All events are free to register, although donations are welcome and will go towards supporting the festival’s artists."
"No Emirati novel has garnered the amount of acceptance, rejection, discussion, criticism, and analysis that the novel The Diesel[.]"
"I have been thinking of bringing Arabic adab (أدب) and Chinese wen (文) together in a comparative project and look at the ways in which the very value of the humanities today--that educated individuals are more than the money they make and the goods and services they produce; rather, it is about the problems they help solve and the way in which they interact with the wider world—has always been an integral part of thought and action in human history."
"Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night with an idea in my head. Other times I ravage entire books looking for the spark of a joke. I have read more widely on the subject of medieval Baghdad this spring and summer than I have since grad school, and this has been time very well spent."
Connect ME will "pair an artist based in the United Kingdom with an artist based in the GCC, to create new, collaborative work that considers how digital tools can encourage connectivity across borders."
First, we talked our way through a book that tells the stories of women who rallied to ISIS; then a novel that focuses on a Franco-Moroccan family grappling with the end of colonialism; and last, a picaresque, satirical novel from 1940s Egypt that has been recently re-discovered.