ArabLit Quarterly launched its spring 2024 issue GAZA GAZA GAZA on May 18. Focusing on the current conflict in Gaza, this special issue brings together Palestinian writers and those based in the region to speak about the ongoing situation in Gaza.

ArabLit Quarterly is a quarterly magazine focused on Arabic literatures in translation. It is the premier publication for North African literature and we are proud of its contributions to the African literary space as well as to global conflicts.

In the face of death and loss, destruction of cultural and academic infrastructure, and callousness of those in power, ArabLit Quarterly and Gaza’s Majalla 28 have come together to publish words and art from Gaza. Co-editors Mohammed Zaqzooq and Mahmoud Al-Shaer have gathered essays, poems, and life-and-death reflections by writers living in Gaza that speak to their lives between October 2023 and March 2024.


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Gaza Gaza Gaza includes work that expands readers’ vision of Gaza, looking back as far as ancient Egypt. In her essay “Naming Gaza,” Salma Harland follows the area’s name from its earliest known use among the Ancient Egyptians through to the seventh century, countering narratives that call into question the region’s long history.

Continuing the tradition of Palestinian poetry, the issue includes poems of lament, praise, and contemplation by Samer Abu Hawwash (trans. Huda Fakhreddine), Olivia Elias (trans. into English by Kareem James Abu-Zeid and into Arabic by Salma Harland), Basman Aldirawi (trans. Tala Ladki), Ibrahim Nasrallah (trans. Huda Fakhreddine), Yara Omar (trans. Nashwa Nasreldin), the late Saleem al-Naffar (trans. Ruth Abou Rached and Salma Harland), and Yahya Ashour (tr. Khaled Rajeh).

The fiction portion of the issue is captivating as well. Muin Bseiso’s “Fighting with Matchsticks and Chalk” (trans. Cara Piraino) draws a portrait of Gaza in the immediate aftermath of 1948. An excerpt from Atef Abu Saif’s 2019 novel Walk Don’t Walk tells a mystery that begins when an old man is put in a coma by a hit-and-run (trans. Alice Guthrie). In Heba Al-Agha’s “Sour Memory” (trans. Julia Choucair Vizoso), a woman’s memory changes as the details of her life change. In Yousri Alghoul’s “Today My Sight is Sharp” (trans. Graham Liddell), a Gazan man dies while abroad, creating an international incident. In Hisham Bustani’s poetic fiction “Gaza” (trans. maia tabet), a man is faced with a decision about what to do in the face of ongoing destruction.

The issue also includes visual art by Akram Al Deek, who reflects on his practice of assemblage art and not letting go of scavenged objects; a visual poem by Amina Kassem; an excerpt from Hooda Shawa and Michael Jabareen’s graphic novel Gilgamesh’s Skull, translated by Anam Zafar and Nadiyah F.A.; and postcards from Gaza, collected by Rayelle Niemann.

In their editorial note, the editors remark that their hope for this issue is “for there to be a record, for there to be writing.” Read more about the issue here.

Order copies of the Gaza Gaza Gaza issue on Amazon.