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Bilingual Edition

The Perception of Meaning

Hisham Bustani
Translated from the Arabic by Thoraya El-Rayyes

Paper $24.95    |    978-0-8156-1059-5    |    2015

ebook 978-0-8156-5348-6

Co-winner of the 2014 King Fahd Center for Middle East Studies Translation of Arabic Literature Award

"Bustani tackles the ‘big issues’ of modern life with imagination and originality."—Los Angeles Review of Books

Thoraya El-Rayyes has received the Modern Language Association of America’s Aldo and Jeanne Scaglione Prize for a Translation of a Literary Work honorable mention for her translation of Hisham Bustani’sThe Perception of Meaning.

"A witty, pugnacious, bitingly satirical and sharply glittering assemblage."—Electronic Intifada

"Bustani’s work is experimental, literary fiction with a razor edge, slicing the tops off of familiar myths, tales, legends, and then, transforming them into visceral, grotesque fables."—The Literary Review

"A set of fascinating experimental works."—World Literature Today

"With the original Arabic juxtaposing the English, Bustani’s works call for a deeper look between the lines for the differences between the two. He successfully advocates for creativity without bounds, unconfined by the ‘normal’ rules of writing."—Al Jadid

"Bustani tackles the big issues of modern life with imagination and originality. He is duly recognized as an important voice in Arab literature and his work is starting to appear on academic reading lists."—Rhizomatic Ideas

"Offering a glimpse of a very different kind of writing than found in ’traditional‘ modern Arabic fiction The Perception of Meaning is a very welcome, and worthwhile, volume."—Complete Review

"Enigmatic and yet wonderfully immersive novel"—Music and Literature

"Whose voice is strong enough to examine the heartbreaking mysteries of our times with such wry, unflinching power? Try Hisham Bustani. When he drops his brave bucket into the ‘deep, deep well’ of human doings, expect something excruciatingly perceptive and astonishing to rise. These are not lullabies."—Naomi Shihab Nye, author of 19 Varieties of Gazelle: Poems of the Middle East

"One of the most influential members of a new generation of Jordanian writers, Bustani is a progressive novelist who experiments with both form and content in his work."—The Culture Trip

  The Perception of Meaning

  Hisham Bustani is a Jordanian writer and activist, and the author of four collections of short fiction. Renowned for his contemporary themes, style, and language, he has been described by al-Ra’i as "bringing a new wave of surrealism to [Arabic] literary culture, which missed the surrealist revolution of the last century." Bustani’ s work has been translated into four languages with English-language translations appearing in prestigious journals across the US, UK, and Canada, including World Literature Today, The Common, and The Literary Review. His third short-story collection, The Perception of Meaning, won the 2014 University of Arkansas Arabic Translation Award. Thoraya El-Rayyes, a Palestinian Canadian translator, lives in Amman, Jordan. Her translations have appeared in numerous journals, including Banipal, Open Letters Monthly, and World Literature Today, among others.

Book Description »

View other series books on Middle East Literature in Translation

5 1/2 x 8, 288 pages

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