The Collected Works of Jane Bowles (Book Acquired, 12.19.2014)



I picked up My Sister’s Hand in Mine: The Collected Works of Jane Bowles mostly because I couldn’t find a stand-alone version of the novel Two Serious Ladies. I guess it doesn’t hurt to have, y’know, all of her stuff (or really most of her stuff), but I’m not really a fan of omnibus editions. My interest in Two Serious Ladies was piqued by Ben Marcus, whom I interviewed by phone earlier this month (still transcribing that one; hope to run it in January). He spoke highly of the book and includes it on his writing syllabus.

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Christmas Truces

The Christmas truce was a series of unofficial truces between British and German forces which occurred along the Western Front of World War I around Christmas 1914. In the week leading up to Christmas, soldiers exchanged seasonal greetings and songs between their trenches. On Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, many soldiers from both sides independently ventured into “no man’s land” between the lines. There they mingled, exchanged food and souvenirs, and on several occasions held joint burial ceremonies and carol-singing. Troops from both sides were also friendly enough to play games of football with one another.
Although fighting continued to take place in some places, the truce is often considered a symbolic moment of peace and humanity amidst one of the most violent events of human history. However, the high commanders on both sides saw it as insubordination, and it was not repeated after 1914.
Illustration: A. C. Michael, The Illustrated London News


Beloved Egyptian Novelist Radwa Ashour, 1946-2014


Beloved, acclaimed Egyptian novelist Radwa Ashour has died, leaving behind a great hole:

radwa_photo4Ashour has struggled with cancer for several years, a struggle that has been beautifully chronicled in her writing, particularly her recent Heavier than Radwa. Three days ago, novelist Ahdaf Souief tweeted: “Radwa Ashour: Get well quick. We need you.”

As news of Ashour’s passing spread, many expressed gratitude and loss on social media. Novelist Miral al-Tahawy wrote: “Radwa Ashour…you taught us to love writing…. Good-bye!”

Journalist Amira Howeidy wrote that: “Novelist, literature professor, intellectual, critic and most beautiful, gentle soul Radwa Ashour has died.”

Souief wrote: “Peace my beloved friend. Radwa Ashour. Silence now.”

Ashour left behind her husband, the great Palestinian poet and memoirist Mourid Barghouti, and her son, the poet and political scientist Tamim Barghouti.

radwa_ashour A tweet from July 2012.

It was only a few months ago — March of this year — that Ashour was…

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Snapshots from a Life: Egyptian Novelist Radwa Ashour, 1946-2014

RIP Radwa Ashour.


Photos and quotes from Egyptian novelist Radwa Ashour (1946-2014):

Ashour and Barghouti, via Mansoura Ezz Eldin Ashour and her husband Mourid Barghouti, via Mansoura Ezz Eldin

On her husband, Palestinian poet and memoirist Mourid Barghouti, from Spectres, trans. Barbara Romaine: “Seven years after his deportation, Mourid would be able to return to our house in Cairo, not to live with us, but for short visits, determined each by a prior permit granted by the authorities in charge of security. Upon his arrival at Cairo Airport, an airport official would stamp his passport and make a note upon it saying, ‘One week, non-renewable,’ or, ‘Two weeks only.’ We would meet him at the airport. See him off at the airport. Wait until we could go to him during our summer holiday, or petition once again in the hope that he might be permitted to visit us again. This situation lasted another ten years.”

At center. In Budapest in 1980, from Mohamed Medhat Mostafa. At…

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