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.

Tight Spaces

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We discuss an acclaimed novel set during the first Palestinian Intifada and one inspired by a tiny, legendary bookstore in Algiers.

Show Notes:

This year, the International Prize for Arabic Fiction—which went to Abdelouahab Aissaoui’s The Spartan Court—and the Sheikh Zayed Book Award—which had winners in seven categories—both had awards ceremonies on YouTube.

MLQ will also participate in the now-online Sant Jordi Literary Festival (April 23-25), having recorded discussions with Elisabeth Jaquette about her translation of The Frightened Ones (by Dima Wannous) and Sawad Hussain about her translation of Bab as-Saha, or The Passage to the Plaza (by Sahar Khalifeh).

Khalifeh’s classic 1990 novel The Passage to the Plaza is newly out in English from Seagull Books.

Kaouther Adimi’s Our Riches, translated by Chris Andrews, is also newly out from New Directions; it follows the story of Edmond Charlot and Les Vraies Richesses bookshop in Algiers.

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