"Books and Readers in the Arab World"
Noted authors and cultural critics share their perspective on the situation of books and reading and publishing in the Arab world.
- Sat., Mar. 7, 2009, 1:30 PM
- Family Theater
- 90 minutes
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With unprecedented sales of books by Arab authors such as Alaa Al-Aswany and Raja Al-Sanea and international authors Paolo Coelho and J.K. Rowling, the Arab world is experiencing a renewed interest in books and in reading. On the other hand, there is a growing concern in the region about the impact that decreasing literacy rates and the increased reliance on television are having on the culture. In this conversation, noted authors and critics will share their perspective on the state of books, reading, and publishing in the Arab world. Performance Timing: 90 minutes
Adila Laidi-Hanieh (Palestine) is currently doing her Ph.D. at George Mason University. She taught modern Arab intellectual history and Palestinian art at Birzeit University, Palestine. Laidi-Hanieh has written extensively on arts and cultural practice. She ran the Khalil Sakakini Cultural Centre in Ramallah from its establishment in 1996 until 2005.
Mohammed Bennis (Morocco) was born in Fez. In 1996, he co-founded the House of Poetry in Morocco, and until 2003 served as its president. Among the numerous awards he has received are Morocco's Grand Award for Creative Writing (1993); Al-Atlas Prize for Translation (Morocco, 2000); the city of Calopezzati literature award for Mediterranean Poetry (2006); the Feronia literary prize for poetry (2007) and the Sultan al-Oweis Prize (2007). Bennis was primarily responsible for the establishment in 2000 by UNESCO of an annual World Poetry Day on March 21.
Ferial J. Ghazoul (Iraq) is a scholar, critic, and translator. Educated in the Arab world, Europe, and the United States, she has written extensively on gender issues in modern and medieval literature and is the author of Nocturnal Poetics: The Arabian Nights in Comparative Context (AUC Press, 1996). Ghazoul is professor of English and Comparative Literature at the American University in Cairo.
Saad Albazei (Saudi Arabia) earned his B.A. in English language and literature from the University of Riyadh (now King Saud University) in 1974, and his M.A. and Ph.D. from Purdue University in the United States. In addition to his current position as Professor of English and Comparative Literature at King Saud University, Albazei is also President of the Riyadh Literary Club and editor of Huqul, a quarterly published by the Literary Club.
Part of ARABESQUE: Arts of the Arab World
FREE EVENT. Tickets are required, and can be ordered in person at the box office, or by calling Instant Charge at (202) 467-4600. There is no service charge. There is a limit of 12 tickets per order. At this time, these tickets are not available online; we apologize for any inconvenience.
Note: There is no free parking when attending or picking up tickets for free events.
A. Huda and Samia Farouki
The State of Kuwait
The State of Qatar
The United Arab Emirates Embassy in Washington, D.C.
Additional support is provided by the Ministry of Culture and Information, Kingdom of Bahrain; the Sultan Qaboos Cultural Center; The Qatar Foundation for Education, Science, and Community Development; the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art; Alice and David Rubenstein; Saudi Aramco; the Ford Foundation; Elizabeth and Michael Kojaian; Elaine and Steve Wynn; Ambassador Elizabeth Frawley Bagley and Mr. Smith Bagley; The Laura Pels Foundation; and the Kennedy Center International Committee on the Arts.Presented in cooperation with the League of Arab States.