Arab Voices in Diaspora: Critical Perspectives on Anglophone Arab Literature
Edited by Layla al-Maleh
Rodopi Books, 2009, 504 pp.
La Confession Negative (The Negative Confession)
By Richard Millet
Gallimard, 2009, France
Richard Millet’s recent work “La Confession Negative” is a harrowing tale based on the author’s participation in the Lebanese civil war in 1976. Residing in a grey area between memoir and novel, the book’s central theme is Millet’s becoming an author through the experience of war. Millet has previously written of this experience, albeit in a more roundabout fashion, in his first novel, “Sur un Balcon a Beyrouth.”
A Country Called Amreeka: Arab Roots, American Stories
By Alia Malek
Free Press, 330 pp, 2009
Encyclopedia of Arab American Artists: Artists of the American Mosaic
By Fayeq Oweis
Greenwood Press, 2008, 336 pp.
Shoot an Iraqi: Art, Life, and Resistance Under the Gun
By Wafaa Bilal and Kari Lydersen
City Lights, 2008.
It has been observed that art does not, in fact, imitate life. Art can only, and at best, hold up an imperfect mirror to life, one which exaggerates certain elements while neglecting others. Perfect imitation is never possible.
Arab and Arab-American Feminisms: Gender, Violence and Belonging
Edited by Rabab Abdulhadi, Evelyn Alsultany, and Nadine Naber
Syracuse University Press, 2010
Master of the Eclipse
By Etel Adnan
Interlink Pub Group, 2009.
With her youthful publication of the seminal novel, “Sitt Marie Rose,” the Lebanese-American writer and artist, Etel Adnan, set some very high aesthetic standards for her work. Now, her new collection of stories attests to her enduring power to defy boundaries and to engage her readers. Her title story, “Master of the Eclipse,” pays tribute to the deceased modern Iraqi Kurdish poet, Buland al-Haidari.
Swimming Toward the Light
By Angela Tahaan Leone
Syracuse University Press, 2007.
“Swimming Toward the Light,” a novel by Angela Tahaan Leone, is a heart-wrenching story of a sensitive and talented young girl named Irene, whose musical gifts and sense of self are suffocated by the intransigence and misunderstanding of her Lebanese immigrant parents and American peers.
A History of Photography in Lebanon 1840–1944
By Michel Fani
Editions de L’Escalier, 2005, 424 pp.
For an American reader, the experience of reading this book and exploring the photographs of Lebanon, which range from the earliest daguerreotypes to those taken in the middle of the 20th century, is likely to be an unalloyed pleasure.