The 2018 Bahrain International Book Fair: Breaking Your Fast with an Onion

"When patience is poorly rewarded, you will certainly hear Bahrainis express their frustration by likening the situation to 'breaking one’s fast with an onion.' And after a little over a year’s worth of waiting, Bahrain’s 18th International Book Fair is that onion."

‘Pirates, Dragons, Magicians, and Vampires from the Heart of Bahrain’

"The English self-publishing scene in Bahrain is going strong, I believe. The more writers believe in themselves and push through the shell that keeps them from taking on huge challenges, the better for the country as a whole. Part of my mission is to enable more Bahraini authors to publish their books (whether through lectures, blogs or whatever)."

Available This Month: Award-winning ‘Chronicles of Majnun Layla and Selected Poems’

Ferial Ghazoul and John Verlenden — both at the American University in Cairo — won last year’s University of Arkansas Arabic Translation Award for their collection Chronicles of Majnun Layla and Selected Poems of Qassim Haddad, by Bahrain’s great living poet. The book will be available at the end of this month from Syracus University Press: The Arkansas award followed a $100,000 … Continue reading Available This Month: Award-winning ‘Chronicles of Majnun Layla and Selected Poems’

Iowa’s International Writing Program Sees First Participants from Yemen, Bahrain

Last week, 34 established writers from around the world began to arrive in Iowa City to participate in the University of Iowa's 47th International Writing Program (IWP) residency. This year sees the program’s first-ever participants from Yemen (poet and filmmaker Sawsan Al-Areeqe) and Bahrain (poet, short-story writer, and essayist Ali Al Saeed). Kuwaiti writer Nada Faris will also join.

Recent Interviews: Al-Tahawy on Childhood, al-Jallawi on Bahrain & Fadi Azzam on Writing Sex Scenes and Serving the Revolution

This week's "Making the Life of a Modern Nomad Into Literature," published in the New York Times, profiles Egyptian author Miral al-Tahawy. It discusses -- among other things -- her very brief time as part of the Muslim Brotherhood. It's mostly just snappy observations, and not an investigation of al-Tahawy's life or work. I was … Continue reading Recent Interviews: Al-Tahawy on Childhood, al-Jallawi on Bahrain & Fadi Azzam on Writing Sex Scenes and Serving the Revolution

Translating (or Appropriating) Bahrain: Cartoons in the Sand

At the intersection of creative appropriation, translation, cartooning, and journalism, Josh Neufeld creates his "Bahrain: Lines in the Sand." Neufeld wasn't in Bahrain during the recent protests that were violently put down with help from Saudi and UAE soldiers, but he cartoons about them nonetheless. How? Through the lens of two emerging cartoonists he met … Continue reading Translating (or Appropriating) Bahrain: Cartoons in the Sand

Professors Receive $100,000 Grant to Translate Qassim Haddad

Thanks to Sharjah Book Fair for pointing this out to me. Two AUC professors will be supported by a $100,000 National Endowment for the Humanities grant in their efforts to translate the poetry of Bahraini writer Qassim Haddad. Professor Ferial Ghazoul is a scholar, critic and translator who has previously edited several AUC Press collections … Continue reading Professors Receive $100,000 Grant to Translate Qassim Haddad