Headscarves, Diamond Rings, and the Schizophrenia of /Ayza Atgowaz/ in English

In a way, the cover of the English translation of Ghada Abdel Aal's عايزة أتجوز is completely appropriate. It looks like a Sophie Kinsella cover, and the font---to me---screams "fun!" "chick-lit!" "no straining required!"

2 Arab Participants in U of Iowa’s 2010 International Writing Program

Thanks to M.A. Orthofer at The Literary Saloon, I see that the University of Iowa International Writing Program has announced their 2010 International Writing Program participants.  As Orthofer notes, these names are "worth paying attention to, some of these folk will certainly be heard from (or, better yet: read) sooner or later. " From the … Continue reading 2 Arab Participants in U of Iowa’s 2010 International Writing Program

Where Have All the Egyptian (Literature) Blogs Gone?

The most disappointingly silent Egyptian blog---perhaps not for Abderrahmane Mustafa, author of "The Loss of Popularity of Egyptian Blogging," but certainly for me---is Baheyya's. Baheyya, who has a lovely writing style and an incisive literary analysis, has posted only four times since the middle of last August. Mustafa's main concern, at least in his recent … Continue reading Where Have All the Egyptian (Literature) Blogs Gone?

Egypt’s Blog-to-Book Phenomenon: Positive or Negative for Arabic Book World?

Journalist and blogger Ahmed Naji has out a new book, Blogs From Post to Tweet. According to the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information, which is making printed copies available for free, "This book is the first to monitor five years of Arabic blogging by documenting history of the world of Arabic blogs since they … Continue reading Egypt’s Blog-to-Book Phenomenon: Positive or Negative for Arabic Book World?

The Cairo Mediterranean Literary Festival: May 5-12

I don't know quite what to expect from this lit festival---this being its "first edition"---but it seems relatively well organized, if not well publicized. I do appreciate organizer Baad el Bahr's (Over the Sea) use of homologues: The Cairo Mediterranean Literary Festival reflects an important occasion for considering the contemporary literary production and its spreading … Continue reading The Cairo Mediterranean Literary Festival: May 5-12