Syria Speaks

Translator: Various Publisher: Saqi Place of Publication: London Date of Publication: 2014 Editor: Halasa, Malu, Omareen, Zaher & Mahfoud, Nawara

Review

Winner English Pen AwardSyria Speaks is a remarkable achievement and remarkable book – a wise, courageous, imaginative and beautiful response to all that is ugly in human behaviour. This extraordinary anthology gives a voice to those we may have forgotten, or whom we may classify as simply passive and silent victims. The people shown living, dreaming and speaking here are far more than victims and only silent if we refuse to hear them.’ —A.L.Kennedy

‘This extraordinary collection says more about Syria than many months of newspaper reading has told me. It’s a deep look into a dynamic and exciting culture in painful transition – a culture where artists are really stepping up to the plate and making a difference. If Syria has been a bit of a mystery to you, you need to read this book.’ —Brian Eno

Syria Speaks is essential reading for anyone interested in human rights or a better understanding of the current conflict. Comprising essays, stories, poems, songs, photographs and cartoons, this impressive collection shows how artists and activists operate under repressive regimes and how their work can become tools of resistance in war … Syria Speaks pays tribute to many extraordinary acts of courage and shines a light on the dark deeds of a brutal regime.’ — Lucy Popescu, Independent on Sunday

‘The courage of Syria s artistic community is featured in Syria Speaks‘ Kirsty Lang, Front Row BBC R4

‘People will be blown away by this book … a wonderful volume … Extraordinary’ —Janice Forsyth, The Culture Studio, BBC Radio Scotland

‘[Syria Speaks is]… filled with treasures: short stories by Samar Yazbeck and Khaled Khalifa, powerful and terrifying illustrations and digital prints by Khalil Younes and Sulafa Hijazi, posters from the anonymous Syrian artists collective, a letter from the jailed director of the Syrian Center for Media and Freedom of Expression, Mazen Darwish, and many other informative articles, fascinating artwork and writing.’ —Publishing Perspectives

‘The courage of Syria s artistic community is featured in Syria Speaks’ Kirsty Lang, Front Row BBC R4

‘People will be blown away by this book … a wonderful volume … Extraordinary’ —Janice Forsyth, The Culture Studio, BBC Radio Scotland

About the Author

Malu Halasa co-curated three exhibitions of Syria’s art of resistance in London, Amsterdam and Copenhagen in 2012 and 2013. Her other works include The Secret Life of Syrian ingerie.Zaher Omareen is a Syrian writer, who has worked on independent cultural initiatives in Syria and Britain. He is currently completing Tales of the Orontes River, a collection of short stories.

Nawara Mahfoud is a Syrian journalist and documentary producer who has worked for the New York Times. She blogs for the New Yorker.com, among other publications.