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September 19, 2012

Iraqi Poet Amal al-Jubouri to Offer Bilingual Reading at Smith

Editor's note: For a high-res image of Amal al-Jubouri or Rebecca Gayle Howell, e-mail Marti Hobbes.

Amal al-JubouriNORTHAMPTON, Mass.—Amal al-Jubouri, a critical voice in contemporary Iraqi and Arabic-language poetry, will read from her work at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 2, in Weinstein Auditorium. The reading, which will be translated by Rebecca Gayle Howell, is free and open to the public.

Born in Baghdad, al-Jubouri published her first collection of poems, “Wine from Wounds,” at the age of 19. She worked in Iraq as a journalist and translator until 1997 when, seeking political asylum, she emigrated to Germany where she launched Al-Diwan, the first and only Arab-German literary magazine.

Author of five collections, translated into 12 languages, al-Jubouri’s most recent collection, “Hagar Before the Occupation, Hagar After the Occupation,” is the first to be published in English. Translated by Howell with Husam Qaisi, “Hagar” was one of six collections of poetry shortlisted for the 2012 Best Translated Book Awards. These pairs of before/after poems offer many-layered meditations on the tremendous upheaval of a nation and its people set against the ancient story of Hagar.

Howell is a poet, translator and documentarian. Her poems have appeared in such journals as Ecotone and The Connecticut Review, and her documentary work has been collected in the anthologies “Plundering Appalachia” and “The Artist as Activist in Appalachia.”

For more information, contact Jennifer Blackburn at the Smith College Poetry Center (413) 585-4891. For disability access information or to request accommodations, call (413) 585-2407. To request a sign language interpreter specifically, call (413) 585-2071 (voice or TTY) or e-mail All requests must be made at least 10 days prior to the event.

Office of College Relations
Smith College
Garrison Hall
Northampton, Massachusetts 01063

Marti Hobbes
News Assistant
T (413) 585-2190
F (413) 585-2174

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