Friday, 13 October 2017
1.30pm to 2.30pm
Frankfurt Book Fair, Hall 3.1. (L25) The Weltempfang Center for Politics, Literature and Translation


Frankfurt Book Fair logo


ICORN International Cities of Refuge Network
Banipal, Magazine of Modern Arab Literature

invite you to

a Panel debate

1.30 pm to 2.30 pm, Friday, 13 October 2017

Weltempfang, the Center for Politics, Literature and Translation

Frankfurt Book Fair, Hall 3.1. (L25)

Crises in the Arab world – good for creativity? Literary responses

(Arabic, English, German)


Libyan poet and translator Ashur Etwebi,
Syrian poet and critic Mohamad Alaaedin Abdul Moula, and
Samuel Shimon, Iraqi author and founding editor of Banipal and Kikah literary magazines.

Moderated by Peter Ripken

Click to download an A4 flyer for the event

The ongoing crisis in the Arab World has not only led to a situation that many Arab writers continue to have to live in (temporary) exile, but has also contributed to a great variety of literary productions.

Can crises contribute to a greater awareness for what stories have to be told, what poems should be written, can crises actually enhance creativity for Arab writers? Or are crises leading to a difficult situation where Arab writers have more and more problems to get published, to get read and heard?


Ashur EtwebiAshur Etwebi is a poet, novelist, translator and physician from Libya. One of the country's best-known authors, he is now living Norway. He has six collections of poetry, a novel and several translations into Arabic. He has played an important role in the Libyan national health service and is an outspoken proponent of women’s liberation, democracy and the secular state. His poetry is published in English in Banipal 41 and in the collection Poems from Above the Hill.


Mohamad Alaaedin Abdul Moula is a well-known Syrian poet and critic, and a former Mohamad Alaaedin Abdul Mouladirector of Museums and Antiquities in Homs, Syria. He has lived in Mexico City with ICORN, and now lives in Germany. He has been writing since the 1980s, and since 1990 has published numerous works, including poems, essays, children’s stories, short stories and literary criticism and resarch on poetry in Syria and Iraq including bilingual publications (Arabic-Spanish) and two anthologies of classical and modern poetry from different Arabic countries. Selected poems are published in Banipal 57 – Syria in the Heart.


Samuel ShimonSamuel Shimon is an Iraqi Assyrian author, editor and publisher, living in London. He is a founding editor of Banipal magazine of modern Arab literature in English translation (1998), Kikah magazine for international literature in Arabic (2013), and the popular literary Arabic website (2002). His first novel was the bestselling Arabic novel An Iraqi in Paris.


Peter Ripken• Moderated by Peter Ripken, a founding member and recent chair of the board of ICORN, International Cities Of Refuge Network, and director for more than 20 years of LITPROM, the Frankfurt Book Fair's Society for the Promotion of Literature from Africa, Asia and Latin America, with its magazine LiteraturNachrichten.



A collaboration between

ICORN International Cities of Refuge Network and Banipal Magazine of Modern Arab Literature

ICORN Logo     


Celebrating 20 years of publishing


Click to download a flyer