The Banipal Trust for Arab Literature

Annual Lecture

The winning titles
since the first award

2006 and 2007

2006 winning title Gate of the Sun  The Lodging House, 2007 winner of the Saif Ghobash Banipal Translation Prize


2008 and 2009

The Butterfly's Burden, 2008 winner of Saif Ghobash Banipal Translation Prize  The Collar and the Bracelet, winner of the 2009 Saif Ghobash Banipal Translation Prize


2010 and 2011

Yalo, winner of the 2010 Saif Ghobash Banipal Translation Prize  Adonis: Selected Poems, winner of the Saif Ghobash Banipal Translation Prize 2011


2012

A Muslim Suicide, winner of the 2012 Saif Ghobash Banipal Translation Prize


2013 joint winners

Azazeel was the joint winner of the 2013 Saif Ghobash Banipal Translation Prize  A Land without Jasmine was the joint winner of the 2013 Saif Ghobash Banipal Translation Prize


2014 and 2015

The Corpse Washer, 2014 winner of Saif Ghobash Banipal Translation Prize  The Book of the Sultan's Seal, 2015 winner of Saif Ghobash Banipal Translation Prize


2016 and 2017

The Bamboo Stalk by Saud Alsanousi translated by Jonathan Wright 


2018




The prize is administered by the

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About The Lecture

The Annual Lecture was established in the name of the Saif Ghobash Banipal Prize for Arabic Literary Translation, to mark the tenth annual award of the first prize in the world for a published English translation of a full-length imaginative and creative work of literary merit written in Arabic and published after, or during, the year 1967. The Lecture takes place on any aspect of the subject of Arabic literature and translation.

The sponsor of the Prize, Omar Saif Ghobash and his family, have generously extended their sponsorship to include the staging of this Annual Lecture, whose purpose is to create an opportunity to engage in the expansion and enrichment of dialogue between cultures through the power of translated literature, which creates vital openings for new perceptions, new knowledge and appreciations. 

The Banipal Trust for Arab Literature looks forward to increasingly wider support for reading literature from the Arab world in English translation, and to working with publishers, translators and booksellers to encourage and promote both the wider translation and wider availability of contemporary works of literature by Arab authors.

The inaugural lecture took place at the British Library, London, on 14 October 2016 with speaker Anton Shammas, poet and Professor of Arabic Literature at the University of Michigan. The 2017 Lecture was given by historian and scholar Robert Irwin, and the 2018 Lecture by poet, philosopher and author Adonis. The Lectures take place at the British Library in London, during the month of November, or sometimes in late October.

The annual prize has contributed hugely to raising the profile of contemporary Arabic literature in the English-speaking world, honouring the important and crucial work of individual translators in bringing the work of both established and emerging Arab writers to the attention of the wider world. Each year there are now between 15 and 30 books entered, both fiction and poetry.

View the 2019 Lecture