Thursday, December 06, 2012

Longlist Announced for International Prize for Arabic Fiction 2013

The longlist of 16 novels in the running for the International Prize for Arabic Fiction 2013 is announced today, Thursday 6 December 2012. The contenders were selected from 133 entries from 15 countries, published in the last 12 months.

This year’s longlisted authors come from nine different countries, including Kuwait for the first time. Rabee Jaber, who won the Prize in 2012 with The Druze of Belgrade, returns to the list and is joined by formerly shortlisted authors Waciny Laredj (The Andalucian House, 2011) and Ibrahim Nasrallah (Time of the White Horses, 2009), as well as Muhsin al-Ramly, longlisted for the Prize in 2010 for Fingers Pass. Twelve of the sixteen writers have not appeared in previous long or shortlists, though Mohammed Hassan Alwan is an alumnus of IPAF’s inaugural writer’s workshop, having participated in the nadwa in 2009. It was in fact during this workshop that he began writing The Beaver, which has gone on to feature in this year’s longlist.

Unlike some lists in the past, the 2013 longlist moves away from historical settings, with the majority focusing on contemporary issues from the last 25 years. These range from the impact of 9/11 on Arabs living in Europe to the Israeli-Palestinian struggle and political and sexual freedom and emancipation. Whilst the Arab Spring did feature heavily across this year’s submissions in general, the judges noted that the subject still needs some time to mature.

The full 2013 longlist, with author names in alphabetical order, is as follows:

Oh Mary
Sinan Antoon
Ashraf El-Ashmawi
Al-Dar al-Masriya al-Lubnaniya
The Kingdom of this Earth
Hoda Barakat
Dar al-Adab
I, She and Other Women
Jana Elhassan
Arab Scientific Publishers
Jaffa Prepares Morning Coffee
Anwar Hamed
The Arabic Insitute for Research and Publishing
The Beaver
Mohammed Hassan Alwan
Saudi Arabian
Dar al-Saqi
Our Master
Ibrahim Issa
Bloomsbury Qatar Foundation
The Birds of the Holiday Inn
Rabee Jaber
Dar al-Tanwir
Elias Khoury
Dar al-Adab
Lolita’s Fingers
Waciny Laredj
Dar al-Adab
The Return of the Sheikh
Mohammed Abdel Nabi
Lanterns of the King of Galilee
Ibrahim Nasrallah
Arab Scientific Publishers
The President’s Gardens
Muhsin al-Ramly
The Bamboo Stick
Saud Alsanousi
Arab Scientific Publishers
His Excellency the Minister
Hussein Al-Wad
Dar al-Janub
The Goatherd
Amin Zaoui

The books were selected by a panel of five judges, whose names will be announced in Tunis on Wednesday 9 January 2013, at the same time as the 2013 shortlist of six novels.

In a change to the rules of entry this year, publishers are able to submit any new title by an author who has previously been shortlisted for the Prize, in addition to three other novels.
The winner of the International Prize for Arabic Fiction 2013 will be announced at an awards ceremony in Abu Dhabi on 23 April 2013, on the eve of the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair. The six shortlisted finalists will receive $10,000, with a further $50,000 going to the winner.

The International Prize for Arabic Fiction is an annual literary prize for prose fiction in Arabic. It is run with the support of the Booker Prize Foundation in London and funded by the TCA Abu Dhabi in the UAE.

For further information about the Prize, please visit or follow the Prize on Facebook.

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