Libyan authors at the Birmingham Book Festival – Ghazi Gheblawi, Giuma Bukleb and Mohamed Mesrati


at the Birmingham Book Festival

Free Libya

7.00pm, Monday 8th October 2012

Bayleaf Restaurant
Unit 16/17, The Custard Factory
The Green House,  2 Gibb Street

Digbeth, Birmingham  B9 4AA

To book a ticket (£8 and concs £5) click here

Three Libyan authors read from their works and discuss life for writers under Gaddafi and how the future in the new Libya is shaping up. Ghazi Gheblawi, Giuma Bukleb and Mohamed Mesrati are powerful voices in the Libyan literary scene.

To read some of their works and of other LIbyan authors, all published in English translation in Banipal 40 – Libyan Fiction, click here 


Ghazi GheblawiMohamed Mesratie

   Ghazi Gheblawi                    Mohamed Mesrati     

Giuma Bukleb

   Giuma Bukleb

Ghazi Gheblawi is a well-known author, blogger, journalist and surgeon. He co-founded the online newspaper Libya Alyoum (Libya Today) and in 2005 founded his award-winning Imtidad  blog, and produces, with Mohamed Mesrati, the Imtidad Cultural Podcast, focusing on cultural, literary and social issues in Libya and the Arab world, and working for “a better future for Libya that is free, democratic, and just”. He has two collections of short stories and poems.

Giuma Bukleb published his short stories in Libyan literary magazines but stopped writing for many years after being imprisoned by the Gaddafi regime for 10 years in the late 1970s.  He has lived in the UK since 1988, and has published works in Arab newspapers and in one collection, and in English translation in Banipal 40 – Libyan Fiction. Some of his poems are published online.

Mohamed Mesrati was born in 1990 in Tripoli and came here with his family in 2005.  He started writing and publishing short stories when he was just 16. His novel-in-progress Mama Pizza was excerpted in Banipal 40 – Libyan Fiction. He recently said: “As a writer or as an activist or as a blogger, my goal, my dream is to write to celebrate freedom, also liberation. That's what we get from writing, that’s what makes us satisfied." When he is not blogging, writing or working in a book shop, Mohamed studies English Literature and Creative Writing at London University.

Margaret Obank, publisher of Banipal, whose Banipal 40 – Libyan Fiction includes works by all three authors in English translation, will moderate the evening. Earlier this year she attended the new Libya’s first International Tripoli Poetry Festival.

Copies of Banipal 40 – Libyan Fiction will be available during the Festival and on the night. 

Banipal 40 is Banipal's digital edition free trial issue.

Link to Banipal digital free trial


For Ghazi Gheblawi's blog and the podcast Imtidad, click here.

For an interview with Mohamed Mesrati, click here.

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This is a Banipal collaboration with the Birmingham Book Festival


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West Midlands Writing Partnership Birmingham Book Festival


Published Date - 08/10/2012