Hosted ByUrsula Lindsey & M Lynx Qualey

BULAQ is a podcast about contemporary writing from and about the Middle East and North Africa. We talk about books written in Aleppo, Cairo, Marrakech and beyond. We look at the Arab region through the lens of literature, and we look at literature -- what it does, why it matters, how it relates to society and history and politics -- from the point of view of this part of the world. BULAQ is hosted by Ursula Lindsey and M Lynx Qualey and co-produced by Sowt.

The Cat Is Out of The Bag

This episode looks at the Fall 2020 issue of ArabLit Quarterly, which focuses on cats: in contemporary Arabic stories, in erotic poetry, in medieval scholarship, in Egyptian art, in Palestinian politics, and more.

We read from:

Ghada Samman’s “Beheading the Cat,” translated by Issa Boullata.

The poetry of Rasha Omran, in the issue in Arabic, French, and English.

Al-Jawbari’s advice on avoiding criminals with cats, translated for the issue by Dima El-Mouallem.

We also focus on:

Karim Zidan’s essay on cats in Egyptian art, “Felines, Fellahin, and Fortune Tellers.”

Hoda Marmar’s essay-interview with Muna Nasrallah, the daughter of Emily Nasrallah and previous owner of the cat from Nasrallah’s classic YA novel, What Happened to Zeeko?

The fifteenth-century encyclopedic text “Merits of the Housecat,” translated by David Larsen.

Layla Baalbaki’s classic story “The Cat,” translated by Tom Abi Samra.

You can get a copy of the magazine at www.arablit.org.

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