Cultural boycott of Germany?
The German anti-Semitism debate is increasingly off-key
These days, anyone opposing both anti-Semitism and racism faces a difficult choice, as numerous recent cases show. Where must we start in order to change this?
Adania Shibli, the Frankfurt Book Fair and the LiBeraturpreis
Litprom under fire
Palestinian author Adania Shibli was to have received Litprom's LiBeraturpreis at the Frankfurt Book Fair. Writers from around the world have criticised the organisation in an open letter for postponing the award ceremony. By Nikolas Fischer
Algeria – wasteland for Arabic literature
Big Brother is watching you
In May 2023, Algerian author Said Khatibi won the prestigious Sheikh Zayed Award in the young author category for his historical crime novel "Nihayat al-Sahra'" – in English, 'the End of the Sahara'. Claudia Mende caught up with Khatibi in Abu Dhabi for Qantara.de
Abu Dhabi International Book Fair
"We're not looking for Western recognition"
The United Arab Emirates has made cultural dialogue its mission. At the 2023 Abu Dhabi International Book Fair, the country confidently presented itself as the custodian of Arab culture. Although the book fair is a place for authors and publishing companies to meet and talk, there were limits to what could be openly discussed. Claudia Mende reports from Abu Dhabi
Iraq's art and literature scene
Culture boom in Baghdad
Frustrated with their politicians, young Iraqis are turning their backs on politics and throwing themselves into cultural life. Birgit Svensson reports from Baghdad
Frankfurt Book Fair
Iran drops out, citing interference
Iran has withdrawn its participation in the Frankfurt Book Fair, accusing the event of meddling in the country's domestic affairs. Organisers have denied the accusation. By Kristina Reymann-Schneider
Abu Dhabi Book Fair
Arabic literature, criticism and commerce
These days, at the Abu Dhabi Book Fair, the problems of the Arab book market and Arab literature are discussed with astonishing frankness. It has also become an international event – on a scale not seen since the Arab revolutions. Stefan Weidner reports from Abu Dhabi
Book fair in Algiers
Habib Tengour and the "Poems of the World"
The Algiers book fair has taken place for the 25th time, following a two-year break owing to the pandemic. Independent Algerian publisher APIC used the occasion to showcase its avant-garde poetry series, initiated by the Algerian poet and ethnologist Habib Tengour. Interview by Regina Keil-Sagawe
Literary power politics
Spotlight on the UAE's 30th Abu Dhabi Book Fair
They’ve already got the Louvre; they’ll soon have a Guggenheim Museum as well – and now the Emirates have added literature to their quest for cultural supremacy in the Arab world. Stefan Weidner reports from Abu Dhabi, from the first book fair of this year to take place in person
Habermas, the Sheikh Zayed Award and Arab reactions
Habermas and the contradictions of the Arab intellectual
Uproar, fuss and mutual accusation: following the German philosopher Juergen Habermas' rejection of the 2021 Sheikh Zayed Book Award, the social media posts by those involved in the Arabic cultural scene covered a broad spectrum. Islam Anwar takes a look for Qantara
A triumph for discourse
Juergen Habermas' rejection of the Sheikh Zayed Book Award
After at first agreeing to accept the grand prize as "Cultural Personality of the Year" in the Sheikh Zayed Book Award, Juergen Habermas then decided to decline the honour. A commentary by Reinhard Schulze
Sheikh Zayed Book Award
Why has Juergen Habermas rejected a prize from the UAE?
At nearly 92, Juergen Habermas is still advocating for a robust and transparent civil society. Now Germany's greatest living intellectual has rejected a book award from the United Arab Emirates. Stuart Braun has the details