Bard Events Calendar

Middle Eastern Studies Program Presents

Monday, October 16, 2017
Promising Beginnings and Arrested Developments: Early Arabic Translations of the Novel in Egypt, Lebanon and Palestine
Olin, Room 202
6:00 pm
Maya Issam Kesrouany, Assistant Professor of Modern Arabic Literature, New York University Abu Dhabi (NYUAD)
This talk looks at specific texts that borrow from three European novels through creative translation, effectively transforming the originals, but maintaining their original alienness from the new reading culture they find themselves in. Such creative appropriation can tell us a lot about the early borrowing of fictional narrative precisely as a form of negotiation and not full reproduction. Comparing the different ways translators engaged with the original novels also complicates what they thought of as “modern,” “fiction” and how they theorized the “worlds” of their works. 

Maya Issam Kesrouany, Ph.D. in Comparative Literature, is an assistant professor of Modern Arabic Literature at New York University Abu Dhabi (NYUAD). Her book manuscript "Prophetic Translation: The Promise of European Literature in the Egyptian Imaginary" is forthcoming with Edinburgh University Press. Her research interests include nationalism and political imaginaries; civil society formations and the public sphere; critical translation theory; the politics of language, literary form and genre. She has taught at Emory University, the American University of Beirut, and the American University of Sharjah.

co-sponsors: Literature Program and the Translation Initiative 

For more information, call 845-758-7506, or e-mail

Time: 6:00 pm

Location: Olin, Room 202