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Banipal Book Club dates for your diary

Posted on 23 November 2012 by Alice

Friday 30 November 2012, 6.45 – 8.45pm

V&A Friday Late:

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Record, Reframe, Resist

Banipal Book Club hosts

Short Story Circles

at the V&A’s Friday Late

6.45-7.15pm, 7.30-8.00pm and 8.15-8.45pm

The Sackler Centre
Cromwell Road
London SW7 2RL
020 7942 2000

Click here for directions.

Entry: Free.


Banipal Book Club hosts three 30 minute story-telling circles on 30 November as part of the V&A’s Friday Late: Record, Reframe, Resist. Each circle focuses on a different story from a different Arab country, with interactive performance and discussion. The stories have all been published in recent issues of Banipal and are all available to read online or download in pdf format (see below). Read the stories in advance or just come along to learn more about modern Arab story-telling today. There will be printed copies of the stories available on the night.


THE WAY TO POPPY STREET, by Tunisian author Rachida el-Charni.

The Way to Poppy Street tells the story of a feisty young woman who refuses to give up – whatever the cost. It was first published in English translation in Banipal 39 – Modern Tunisian Literature (Winter 2010) and later selected for and published in the Granta Book of the African Short Story (2012). Translated by Piers Amodia.

To read online, click here.
Download as pdf.


KUYA’S LITTLE THINGS, by Emirati author Abdul Hamid Ahmed.

Kuya’s Little Things turns on the dreams of impoverished South Indian worker Kuya. It was selected from Banipal 42 – New Writing from the Emirates (Winter 2011). Translated by Thomas Aplin.

To read online, click here.
Download as pdf.


A FATEFUL MEAL, by Palestinian author Eyad Barghuthy.

A father and daughter share a fateful meal in an Acre fish restaurant. From the latest issue, Banipal 45 – Writers from Palestine. Translated by John Peate.

To read online, click here.
Download as pdf.

Please do come along for relaxed discussion. We hope to see you soon!

Join the event on Facebook

This is a Banipal collaboration with the V&A and Nour Festival of Arts

Thursday 13 December 2012, 6.30 – 8.30pm

Banipal Book Club discusses

The Open Door by Latifa al-Zayyat

Thursday 13 December
6.30 – 8.30pm
The Library and Meeting Room at the Arab British Centre

Click here for directions.

Buy The Open Door here.
Or get it from the Banipal-Arab British Centre Library of Modern Arab Literature.

All newcomers welcome!

Latifa al-Zayyat’s The Open Door (translated from the Arabic by Marilyn Booth) is considered to be a landmark in women’s writing in Arabic and was awarded the first Naguib Mahfouz Medal for Literature in 1996. Published in 1960, The Open Door depicts a young woman, Layla, and her personal, sexual and political coming-of-age in 1950’s Egypt as she seeks to escape the narrow confines of her conservative social background. Set in the decade following the Second World War, the novel depicts the 1952 Revolution and Suez Canal Crisis. The Open Door is both an exploration of the changing social and political circumstances of Egypt and of the complicated and troubled consciousness of its protagonist, Layla.

In a review of the novel, published in Banipal 12, Samir El-Youssef writes: “It is beyond question that The Open Door is one of the early – and powerful – attempts to incorporate in a literary text the social and political history from a female perspective… But what is perhaps most impressive is the narrative’s ability to record the symbolic consciousness of the main character. Through a succession of symbolic gestures we become fully aware of the stifling, almost claustrophobic climate in which Layla is doomed to live and strives to get away from.”

Do come along and join the discussion about The Open Door.
For more information on the book and the author, click here.

Please contact if you have any queries.

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