Sinan Antoon
Iraqi Novelist, Poet, Filmmaker
Host: Said & Dari
Aired: Wednesday 6.11.08 - 10:00-11:00 PM EST

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Sinan Antoon is a poet, novelist, and translator. He studied English literature at Baghdad University before moving to the United States after the 1991 Gulf War. He did his graduate studies at Georgetown, where he earned an MA in Arab Studies, and Harvard where he earned a Ph.D in Arabic Literature in 2006. His dissertation was on the 10th century Arab poet Ibn al-Hajjaj. His poems and essays (in Arabic and English) have appeared in various journals and publications in the Arab world, including as-Safir, an-Nahar, al-Adab, and Masharef, as well as The Nation, Middle East Report, al-Ahram Weekly, Banipal and the Journal of Palestine Studies. He has published a collection of poems, Mawshur Muballal bil-Huroob (A Prism; Wet with Wars, Cairo 2003), which was published in English as Baghdad Blues in April 2007 by Harbor Mountain Press, and a novel I`jam, which was published in English as I`jam: An Iraqi Rhapsody in March 2007 by City Lights Books. Translations in Bosnian/Croatian, Portuguese, and Norwegian are forthcoming. His poetry was anthologized in Iraqi Poetry Today.

He has recited his poetry in Baghdad, Beirut, Berlin, London, New York and Seville. He has also contributed numerous translations of Arabic poetry into English. His co-translation of Mahmud Darwish’s poetry was nominated for the PEN Prize for translation in 2004. Antoon returned to his native Baghdad in 2003 as a member of InCounter Productions to co-direct/produce the documentary About Baghdad about the lives of Iraqis in a post-Saddam occupied Iraq. He served as senior editor with the Arab Studies Journal, and currently serves as a member of Pen America, a contributing editor to Banipal and a member of the editorial committee of Middle East Report. Antoon is currently an Assistant Professor at New York University.

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