Serpentine
Asymptote Blog » Arabic
by Bella Creel
2w ago
In our column “Retellings,” Asymptote presents essays delving into myths, those enduring stories that continue to transform and reincarnate. In this rendition, Kanya Kanchana traces the winding path of serpents across world literature and translation in a longform lyric essay. Weaving between times and traditions, Kanya draws together the philosophical concepts, conflicting perceptions, and atavistic ..read more
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A Trace of Justice: On At Rest in the Cherry Orchard by Azher Jirjees
Asymptote Blog » Arabic
by Xiao Yue Shan
3w ago
At Rest in the Cherry Orchard by Azher Jirjees, translated from the Arabic by Jonathan Wright, Banipal Books, 2024. In 2005, Journalist Azher Jirjees published Terrorism. . . Earthly Hell, an irreverent study of terrorist militias in Iraq, against the backdrop of an expectant country. That same year, elections were held, and a constitution drafted ..read more
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May 2024: Upcoming Opportunities in Translation
Asymptote Blog » Arabic
by Kathryn Raver
2M ago
SUBMISSIONS THE VIEW FROM GAZA The Massachusetts Review is calling for submissions for a special issue, The View From Gaza. Palestinian writers are encouraged to send their work—whether it be poetry, prose, essays, or art—for this special issue, which will commemorate those who have been lost in the genocide and celebrate the ongoing resistance and resilience in ..read more
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From The Bitter Landscapes of Palestine
Asymptote Blog » Arabic
by Xiao Yue Shan
2M ago
These days, many of the images we see from Palestine are ones of unbearable violence—a necessary example of what Roland Barthes called “the experiential order of proof”. However, despite the vital role of these photographs in bearing witness and documenting the ongoing atrocity, there is an equally essential need to elaborate this unidimensional representation with the ..read more
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Knowledge and Resistance: An Interview with Maggie Schreiner of Librarians and Archivists With Palestine
Asymptote Blog » Arabic
by Xiao Yue Shan
3M ago
To eradicate an archive is to destabilize lived presences, delegitimize extant lineages, and omit vital intellectual and socio-historical discourses from our understanding of the world. For over a decade, the international organization Librarians and Archivists with Palestine (LAP) has stood witness to this fact, creating programs and resources that detail the ongoing destruction of artifacts, heritage, and knowledge ..read more
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From The Tale of a Wall
Asymptote Blog » Arabic
by Xiao Yue Shan
3M ago
As you read this, the writer Nasser Abu Srour is serving a life sentence at a maximum-security prison in the Negev desert—a fate he was assigned to after being accused of killing a Shin Bet agent during the Intifada of the Stones. During this series of uprisings and demonstrations, Palestinians protested against increasing Israeli state ..read more
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Two Poems by Mahmoud Darwish
Asymptote Blog » Arabic
by Xiao Yue Shan
3M ago
Of all that Mahmoud Darwish has left to us in his legacy of prismatic language, transcendent humanism, and elucidation of Palestinian consciousness, the greatest gift might be his belief that literature can confront any question—even those that seem most unanswerable—and consequently, his profound demonstration of living, gracefully and with dignity, inside ambiguity. Translated beautifully by ..read more
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Scream of Freedom: Samar Yazbek and Leri Price on Where the Wind Calls Home
Asymptote Blog » Arabic
by Meghan Racklin
4M ago
Samar Yazbek’s Where the Wind Calls Home is a poetic rumination that shifts through the land of the dead and of the living, between thinking and intuiting, and from the vast destructions of war to its intimate, embodied experience. In taking us to the “other” side—that of the military—in Syria’s unsparing civil war, Yazbek offers ..read more
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I Write From A Lost Place
Asymptote Blog » Arabic
by Bella Creel
4M ago
In this wandering, immense poem, Olivia Elias, a poet of the Palestinian diaspora, shares the intimate elegy of the landless, travelling between voids, violences, and grief. Looking at the casualties of not only people and landscape, but also language, Elias’ rhythmic fragmentations hover and intuit around the immense unsayability of hell, in the guise of “civilized realities ..read more
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Translation Tuesday: Two Poems by Ghayath Almadhoun
Asymptote Blog » Arabic
by Matthew Redman
4M ago
This Translation Tuesday, prose poems come in from Palestinian poet Ghayath Almadhoun, translated with care by Catherine Cobham. A warning label alerts us to the peculiar nature of the metaphors in “Poet in Berlin”. Almadhoun’s poet starts, stops, and starts over, as if trying to get the metaphors in his head to express the correct thing. His slow progress perplexes the detective trapped in the ..read more
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