Series: BULAQ

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.

Sentence to Hope

للاستماع إلى بودكاست بعد أمس http://aj.audio/click We spend most of this episode discussing the work and life of the Syrian playwright Sa’dallah Wannous, and how strongly it relates to repression, resistance and art in the Arab region today. SHOW NOTES: A new Sa’dallah Wannous reader, Sentence to Hope (ed. and trans. Robert Myers and Nada…

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A Woman Shaped by Fear

We talk about the Syrian writer Dima Wannous’ haunting novel The Frightened Ones, translated by Elisabeth Jacquette. It’s a book about fear, panic and anxiety — in one’s body and society, between generations and lovers — that is also somehow a great pleasure to read. Show Notes: The Frightened Ones was shortlisted for the 2018…

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The Shape of Cairo

We take a look at a new book about the architecture of twentieth century Cairo, and discuss the Egyptian capital’s past, present and future, and the way writers have shaped our view of it. Show Notes: Mohamed Elshahed’s architectural survey Cairo Since 1900: An Architectural Guide is newly released from AUC Press, with a foreward…

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Bulaq: trailer

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…

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Little Magazines

للاستماع إلى بودكاست بعد أمس http://aj.audio/click We talk about the landscape and history of independent publishing in the region, our own experiences working for and launching publications, the conundrum of funding, and the magic of little magazines. Show Notes: This episode is partly inspired by an exhibition at the MMAG Foundation in Amman: How to…

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The Not So Simple Past

للاستماع إلى بودكاست بعد أمس http://aj.audio/click This episode focuses on Driss Chraibi’s The Simple Past (Le Passé Simple), a Moroccan novel about a very angry young man in revolt against his father’s tyranny and the hypocrisies of his colonial education. Back in 1954, it was compared to an explosion – and it still packs a…

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The Elephant Is The Room

We recorded this episode in Cairo with author, translator, and Mada Masr culture editor Yasmine Zohdi. We talked about making art in difficult and precarious times; how to acknowledge the political context; censorship and self-censorship. “What we talk about when we talk about trees,” by Yasmine Zohdi, ran in Mada Masr in December of last…

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Writing to Remember

This episode is dedicated to the work of the Moroccan film-maker, novelist, artist, and poetAhmed Bouanani– much of which has yet to be released, and much of which was censored or destroyed in his own life.

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Work-Lit Balance

We talk about passion projects, the value of intellectual labor, and the ups and downs of making a living (sort of) writing about books.

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Top Five

We discuss some of our favorite books from the past year, and some titles we’re excited to get our hands on soon. Show Notes Our Women on the Ground: Essays by Arab Women Reporting from the Arab World, ed. Zahra Hankir Book of Disappearance by Ibtisam Azem, tr. Sinan Antoon Palestine + 100, ed. Basma…

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