Ghada AL-ABSY غادة العبسي (fiction writer; Egypt), a physician, is the author of several novels and short story volumes, among them حشيشة الملاك [Angelica] and الفيشاوي [Al-Fishawi]. The collection أولاد الحور [The Sons of Nymphs] won the 2014 Organization of Cultural Palaces competition; بيت اللو [“House of Almond”] won the 2016 Short Story Egyptian Club competition.
Khaled ALKHAMISSI خالد الخمیسي (fiction writer, non-fiction writer; Egypt) is the founder and president of the Quena storytelling festival and the Mansoura literary festival. His 2007 collection Taxi: Cabbie Talk has been translated into 21 languages, including English; his novel [Noah’s Ark] appeared in 2009, and was followed, in 2014, by the non-fiction 2011. He is extensively involved in organizing public events to promote Arab and Egyptian literatures, cinemas, and culture.
Nael ELTOUKHY (fiction writer, translator; Egypt) has published five books of fiction and two books of translation from the Hebrew. His novels include the critically acclaimed Nisaa Al Karantina [Women of Karantina] (2013) and Al Alfen wa seta [Two Thousand and Six] (2009). He is a staff journalist at a number of regional newspapers. He participates courtesy of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State
Ahmed SHAFIE (poet, fiction writer, translator; Egypt) is the author of the poetry collection [and Other Poems] (2009) and the novel [The Creator] (2013). He has translated Charles Simic, Billy Collins, Lucille Clifton, and an anthology of Afro-American poems into Arabic. Shafie writes for the poetry translation blog ‘Aswast men Honak’ [Distant Voices], and blogs at ‘Qera’at Ahmed Shafie,’ [Readings of Ahmed Shafie]. His participation is made possible by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
MuhamedABDELNABI (fiction writer, translator; Egypt) is the author of the short story collections [A Rose For Who Betrays] (2003) and [The Ghost of Anton Chekhov] (2012), and of the novel [The Return of the Sheikh] (2012), long-listed for the 2013 Arabic Booker Prize. His stories and essays have appeared in many Arabic-language publications in print and on-line. Said’s translations into Arabic include among others work by Hisham Matar, Joe Sacco, the Dalai Lama, and Tariq Ali. He participates courtesy of the William B. Quarton Foundation.
Karim ALRAWI (playwright, fiction writer; Canada/UK/Egypt) writes stage plays in both Arabic and English. He is also the author of several radio and TV plays, and children’s books. He was resident writer at the Royal Court Theatre and the Theatre Royal Stratford East (England), has held writing residencies in the US and Canada, and teaching positions at universities in all three countries.
KhaledALBERRY (novelist; Egypt) is the author of Life is More Beautiful Than Paradise (2001), an autobiographical account his life with a radical Islamist group. His 2010 novel [An Oriental Dance] was shortlisted for the Arabic Booker Prize; other novels include [Negative] (2004) and [The New Testament] (2011). Alberry has worked for the BBC as a journalist, correspondent and producer, and is currently a columnist for the Tahrir Newspaper. He participates courtesy of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S.
Amina ZAYDAN is a literary editor for the Egyptian Ministry of Culture. Her first novel, [‘Fooling Around n’ Stuff Like That’], was published in 2003; her second novel, [‘Red Wine’], won the 2007 Naguib Mafouz Medal for Literature, and is now being translated into English. Her short story “It Happened Secretly” was included in the Best Mediterranean Short Stories Collection (1995). She participates courtesy of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the US Department of State.
On 5/24/20, the US Embassy in Moscow celebrated Joseph Brodsky's 80th birthday with a collage of American poets reading his birthday poem "May 24, 1980" in the poet's self-translation. Chris Merrill, one of Brodsky's students, is among the readers.