Mahmoud Shukair has been a prodigious creator of short stories since the mid-1960s. He was born in 1941 in Jerusalem and grew up there. He studied at Damascus University and has an MA in Philosophy and Sociology (1965).

He has published 45 volumes of works, including nine short story collections, 13 books for children, a volume of folk tales, a biography of a city, and a travelogue. In addition to these, he has written six series for TV, four plays, and countless newspaper and magazine articles, including for online publications.

He worked for many years as a teacher and journalist, was editor-in-chief of a weekly magazine, Al-Talia’a [The Vanguard] 1994-96, and editor-in-chief of Dafatir Thaqafiya [Cultural File] magazine 1996-2000, when he was also director of literature for the Palestinian Ministry of Culture.

He was jailed twice by the Israeli authorities, lasting nearly two years, and in 1975 was deported to Lebanon. He lived in Beirut, Amman and Prague before returning to Jerusalem in 1993, where he still lives.

Mahmoud Shukair's short stories in English translationMordechai's Moustache and his Wife's Cats (Banipal Books 2007), is his first volume in English translation – selected short stories and two essays on his life in writing. The title story was published in Banipal 20 (Summer 2004) and is available to read online here.

Some of his short stories have been translated into French, Spanish, Korean and Chinese.  His works, short stories and essays, have also been published periodically in Banipal magazine.

Praise for the Women of the Family book cover

His latest work, the novel 'Praise for the Women of the Family' (Hachette Antoine, 2016), has been shortlisted for the 2016 International Prize for Arabic Fiction (IPAF).


For all information about Mahmoud Shukair, click here for his website.


Contributor's Issues

Banipal 20 - Summer 2004

Banipal 15 - /16 – Autumn 2002/Spring 2003

Banipal 32 - Summer 2008

Banipal 7 - Spring 2000

Banipal 53 - The Short Stories of Zakaria Tamer (2015)

Banipal 55 - Sudanese Literature Today (Spring 2016)

Banipal 49 - A Cornucopia of Short Stories (2014)

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