Saif Ghobash Banipal Translation Prize Shortlist Announced

The National | December 4, 2017

Four novels have been shortlisted from 17 works for this year’s Saif Ghobash Banipal Prize for Arabic Literary Translation.

The Dove’s Necklace by Raja Alem (translated by Katharine Halls and Adam Talib), The Book of Safety by Yasser Abdel Hafez (translated by Robin Moger), No Knives in the Kitchens of This City by Khaled Khalifa (translated by Leri Price) and Limbo Beirut by Hilal Chouman (translated by Anna Ziajka Stanton) were selected from the long-list of novels. Saudi Arabian Alem won the International Prize for Arabic Fiction with The Dove’s Necklace in 2011, while Khalifa’s No Knives in the Kitchens of This City was shortlisted for the same prize in 2014.

The Saif Ghobash Banipal prize was set up by Emirati Omar Saif Ghobash in memory of his father, Saif Ghobash, who was passionate about literature. It was established by Banipal, the magazine of modern Arab literature in English translation, and the Banipal Trust for Arab Literature.

The prize aims to raise the profile of contemporary Arabic literature and was first awarded on October 9, 2006. This year’s judging panel, comprised of Dr Alastair Niven, Peter Kalu, Wen-chin Ouyang and Salam Sarhan, were tasked with taking into consideration nuance, contemporaneity and readability.

The winner, to be announced in January, will receive Dh14,800 at a ceremony on March 1.

Emily Goodrich