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Friday Finds: Talks with Ahmed Saadawi, Elias Khoury, & Youssef Rakha

“What I mean by this is only in English could I fully inhabit and write from the perspective of a woman. I have no idea why, but I’m sure it’s nothing to do with the nature of English itself as a language.”

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The American Soldier in Arab Novels

Blasim further said, in an interview for Barnes & Noble, that he didn’t write about Americans, and indeed “deliberately ignored stories of American soldiers, the kind that appear in Iraqi and American literature and art, either as heroes, victims, or criminals.”

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Iraqi Literature in Translation: A Brief Introduction

Yet Iraqi literature continues, somehow, to blossom. There are older writers Fadhil al-Azzawi and Muhammad Khudayyir still at work (although the former in exile), and much younger ones, too: Thirtysomething Iraqi Hassan Blassim has been called “perhaps the best writer of Arabic fiction alive.”

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