Literature

Authors Criticize PEN American Center for Israel Gov’t Sponsorship News Roundup
Shane Barnes , Flavorwire

Authors Criticize PEN American Center for Israel Gov’t Sponsorship

All is not well in the literary world. That could be true at any moment of any day, sure, but this week has been especially tumultuous. Maybe that’s not accurate, either, because the letter that’s causing headlines (like this one!) was actually sent in March, though it’s only just now been made available to the public.

on April 7, 2016
Pulitzer Winners Junot Díaz, Richard Ford, Alice Walker Join Over 100 Writers in Calling for PEN… News Roundup
Mondoweiss/Adalah-NY

Pulitzer Winners Junot Díaz, Richard Ford, Alice Walker Join Over 100 Writers in Calling for PEN…

In a letter made public today over 100 writers, including Pulitzer Prize winners Junot Díaz, Richard Ford, and Alice Walker, and award-winning author Louise Erdrich, have called on the PEN American Center “to reject support from the Embassy of Israel” for PEN’s annual World Voices Festival. The seven-day Festival takes place from April 25 to May 1 in New York City.

on April 5, 2016
Young Palestinian Poet Brings To Life The Troubles Of Jerusalem News Roundup
Charlotte Alfred, The Huffington Post

Young Palestinian Poet Brings To Life The Troubles Of Jerusalem

Mohammed al-Kurd was something of a child star. When he was 11 years old, Israeli settlers took over part of his family’s home in the East Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah, sparking protests by Palestinian and Israeli activists. Al-Kurd was the main subject of an award-winning documentary about the episode called "My Neighborhood."

on January 29, 2016
Amer Zahr: Comedian Palestinian-American Profiles
Karmah Elmusa, IMEU

Amer Zahr: Comedian

If you’re a Palestinian and you want to find reasons to be sad, it’s not difficult,” says Zahr. “I believe that no matter who we are, and no matter what sort of situation you’re in, there are at least 5 to 10 funny things that happen to you every day. Or if you’re a Palestinian, it’s more like 50 or 100 things. We live in a surreal universe, and we see a lot of weird stuff.”

on January 21, 2016
Israel Bans Novel on Arab-Jewish Romance From Schools for ‘Threatening Jewish Identity’ News Roundup
Or Kashti, Haaretz

Israel Bans Novel on Arab-Jewish Romance From Schools for ‘Threatening Jewish Identity’

Israel’s Education Ministry has disqualified a novel that describes a love story between an Israeli woman and a Palestinian man from use by high schools around the country. The move comes even though the official responsible for literature instruction in secular state schools recommended the book for use in advanced literature classes, as did a professional committee of academics and educators, at the request of a number of teachers.

on December 31, 2015
Alice Walker on The Color Purple Revival, Palestine and Parental Peace News Roundup
Karu F. Daniels, NBC News

Alice Walker on The Color Purple Revival, Palestine and Parental Peace

As the revival of 'The Color Purple' the musical enters its second week of previews on Broadway this week, Alice Walker -- the lauded author who wrote the Pulitzer Prize winning novel upon which it is based -- is excited about the latest incarnation of her most fabled work.

on November 18, 2015
Why Did They Ban Teen Fiction—‘My Enemy, My Brother’—in 1983? Op-Eds & Analysis
Gabriel Schivone, The Huffington Post

Why Did They Ban Teen Fiction—‘My Enemy, My Brother’—in 1983?

A while back, while scanning over book titles at my favorite Goodwill thrift store in Tucson, AZ, my eyes tripped over a startling find. I'd never read My Enemy, My Brother--I hadn't even heard of James Forman's obscure 1969 teen novel before seeing it on a list of books banned by the Tucson Unified School District (TUSD) here in 1983--yet there it was right in front of me.

on October 1, 2015
The Name That Enables: Remembering Edward Said Op-Eds & Analysis
Hamid Dabashi, Al Jazeera

The Name That Enables: Remembering Edward Said

Rami received Israeli citizenship two years ago. He is a student in his mid-20s, born and living in East Jerusalem. Repulsed by the stone throwing, he has undergone a conscious and self-chosen “Israelization” since high school.

on September 26, 2015
Listen: Israel’s Massacres Can’t be Erased, Says Poet Remi Kanazi News Roundup
Nora Barrows-Friedman, The Electronic Intifada

Listen: Israel’s Massacres Can’t be Erased, Says Poet Remi Kanazi

In his new book, Before the Next Bomb Drops: Rising Up from Brooklyn to Palestine, Remi Kanazi writes a poem titled “Sumoud” about a young boy named Ahmed. Ahmed’s father is being held by Israeli under administrative detention, a practice of indefinite incarceration without charge or trial. He is on hunger strike to demand his rights, like many current Palestinian prisoners.

on September 22, 2015