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The Book of Gaza: Life and literature on the Strip

Tuesday 9 June 2015, 6.15PM


Gaza may feature constantly in the news, but what do we really know of life there, beyond the headlines and the politics?  Join short story writers, Nayrouz Qarmont and Mona Abu Sharekh, in conversation with Comma Press Editor, Ra Page, as they discuss the Book of Gaza: A City in Short Fiction, published in June 2014, just before the outbreak of Operation Protective Edge.  Covering a cross-section of the three generations of authors to have emerged in the city since 1967, this anthology of short stories presents a collective, literary map of the city.  These are stories of anxiety, oppression, and violence, but also of resilience and hope, of what it means to be a Palestinian, and how that identity is continually being reforged; stories of ordinary characters struggling to live with dignity in what many have called 'the largest prison in the world'. 

Nayrouz Qarmont was born in the Yarmouk refugee camp in Damascus in 1984, and was returned to the Gaza Strip as a refugee, as part of the 1994 Israeli-Palestinian Peace Agreement.  She currently works in the Ministry of Women's Affairs.

Mona Abu Sharekh's family was originally from Ashkelon (her father being expelled from his land in 1948).  Her first collection of short stories, What the Madman Said, was published in 2008 by the Palestinian Writers Union.


This is a Comma Press and Writers at York event.

Writers at York offers a lively programme of public readings and workshops, and aims to celebrate and explore the work of emerging and established contemporary writers.

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Location: D/L/002, Derwent