Today, the Emirates Airline Literary Festival announced the guest list for its sixteenth session, which will take place from 31 January to 6 February 2024 at the InterContinental Dubai Festival City Hotel.
The list of speakers includes a group of the most important names in the fields of literature, culture and art, notably the Libyan novelist Ibrahim al-Khoni, two Emirati astronauts, Hazza al-Mansouri and Sultan al-Neyadi, the author and winner of the 2023 International Prize for Arabic Fiction, Zahran al-Qasimi. , the poet Amal al-Sahlavi and the writer and physician Ashraf Faqih. The publisher is Khaled Al-Nasiri of the famous “Med” publishing house.
The festival’s program includes more than 150 events, including the “We Love Life” event, a special night of poetry and performances honoring the works of Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish, and a “Late Night Program” session. Along with three creators, journalist Ibrahim Astadi, Ahmad Gabid, Ashraf Fakih, and Golood Amir.
Ahlam Polouki, CEO of the Emirates Literary Foundation and Director of the Festival, expressed his great joy at the new edition of the festival: “Our inspiration in designing the program for this edition was the possibility to express ourselves; We have prepared a plan that reflects the life processes we live in today. A program where the public, local and international people can find their interests and concerns. He added, “This festival unites people regardless of their differences, with a love for the written and spoken word, and helps them form deep connections that last a lifetime.” Executive Director of Dubai Culture Department of Arts and Literature Dr. Sayyid Mubarak bin Karbash pointed out the authority’s interest in supporting talented people in various fields. An environment that embraces them and inspires them. To showcase their literary and artistic works during the festival. He said: “Over time, the festival has become a great platform to support talent, exchange ideas and anticipate the future of the cultural and literary sector, and its programs and activities are full of fun and knowledge. The cultural movement that Dubai is witnessing.”
The festival’s special events see a large number of visitors every year. In this session, the festival presents an evening of “verses from the depths of the desert” with the participation of a group of international and local poets. On another warm evening, poetry meets ode strings at the Digital Art (ToDA) Theater in Souq Madinat Jumeirah; Stories are told and poems recited with Ahmad Baqid, Amal Al-Sahlavi and Dr. Shihab Khanem, Aisha al-Seifi and Muhammad al-Habsi. On the occasion of the tenth anniversary of his death, the poet Onesi al-Hajj, poet, humanist and philosopher, will be celebrated with an evening hosted by the author, in the presence of his daughter, poetess Nada al-Hajj. Salha Obeid.
Mohammed Ahmad Al-Murr, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Mohammed Bin Rashid Library, novelist Ali Abu Al-Rish and Dr. Rafia Kobash, in a special session on the cultural and literary scene in the United Arab Emirates. In another session, the audience was asked “Who is the real enemy of women?” with Sara Al-Saraf and Aisha Al-Seifi. They are looking for an answer to the question. In “The Interrogation Room,” viewers join Ibrahim Farghali, a writer specializing in crime fiction, in search of a solution to the mystery of a complicated case. In a session full of creativity in all forms, engineer and artist Maryam Al-Balushi, composer Iman Al-Hashimi and contemporary artist Ahmad Al-Ansi talk about art in the “Not Like Words” session. The truth of their rich experiences. The festival offers a variety of talks and workshops on book publishing as a profession and business in an effort to explore the global publishing community. This is through the phenomenon of “unification”. In a thought-provoking session, publishers Khaled Al-Nasri and Nahid Al-Shawa meet writers Ahmad Abdel Latif and Asma Al-Jaroni; To discuss the Arabic publishing industry.
The festival will include great conversations and debates on topics as diverse as artificial intelligence teaching Arabic with Nizar Habash, bringing Chinese stories to life with writer Su Lin Dan, finding inspiration from Mathael Al Ali, and exploring the world of graphic novels. With Dina Muhammad, and celebrating the forgotten. With Ashraf Fakih from History.
As part of the “Youth Day” programme, the festival hosts students aged 16 and above in a group of motivational sessions. Its sessions focus on Arab culture and discuss topics such as literature, business management and sustainability.
Writer and puppeteer Doha Casavne presents the session “Let’s Think We Can Fly More”. and artist Ali Al-Zaini, session “Time to Draw”; Where children immerse themselves in the world of drawing and imagination. In the “Idea Factory” session with Aya Kasem, children become part of the adventure of achieving the genesis of creative ideas. In the “They’re Really Amazing” session with Nahid Shawa, kids get inspired by thirty stories of young women who managed to achieve their dreams despite challenges, climbed mountains, crossed oceans, and triumphed over difficult obstacles.
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