Saravah, Pierre Barouh!

Are all the good ones going to split before 2017? What is it they know about the year to come? This morning brings the news that Pierre Barouh, the French singer, composer, lyricist & founder of Saravah Records (Saravah is an African word that means salvation, benediction) passed yesterday at 82 from a massive heart attack. In early November, in Paris, we sat at dinner with him & the whole gang … Read more Saravah, Pierre Barouh!

The Saga of Sisyphus: Avnery on Peres

 [Uri Avnery posted this piece on Shimon Peres on September 24, 2016, thus 2 days before Peres died. I reproduce it here because I think it is a more accurate evaluation of  Peres than the various obits that have appeared since last night.]         SHIMON PERES is a genius. A genius of impersonation. All his life he has worked on his public persona. The image replaced the man. … Read more The Saga of Sisyphus: Avnery on Peres

Nabile Farès (1940-2016)

Just heard from his close friend, the poet Habib Tengour, that the great Algerian writer Nabile Farès died on Wednesday. A brief bio-note (revising the Wikipedia entry) for those who don’t know Farès or his work, followed by a little essay I wrote some years ago: Born in Collo, Algeria, Nabile Farès participated, during the Liberation war, in the strikes of the high school students in 1956, before joining the ranks of the National … Read more Nabile Farès (1940-2016)

The Murder of Syrian Poet Mohammad Bashir al-Aani

by mlynxqualey PEN International has condemned the murder of Mohammad Bashir al-Aani and his son Elyas in Deir al-Zour City “by the armed group calling itself Islamic State (IS)”: Al-Aani’s death was reported last Thursday. The poet, who published three collections, was reportedly kidnapped last fall. From the PEN release: According to media reports, Al-Aani and his son were originally held in an undisclosed locations with 100 others after they attempted … Read more The Murder of Syrian Poet Mohammad Bashir al-Aani

Michel Deguy: A Feast at Eco’s

La Fête chez Eco Umberto, ton idole dans nos mémoires d’hôte faunesque renaissant mallarméen enjouant tes amis sur les pipeaux du soir nous hanta tout cet été ménippéen Mon esprit trop français monoglotte et qu’on dit de l’escalier, d’étrange Étranger, mais pas de Mantinée, qui a perdu l’audace de faire chœur au Banquer Salue avec retard le génie de ton lieu, l’accordéon, le feu grégeois sur les terrasses la … Read more Michel Deguy: A Feast at Eco’s

Ettore Scola (1931-2016)

Filmography as director Let’s Talk About Women (1964) Thrilling (1965) Hard Time for Princes (1965) The Devil in Love (1966) Will Our Heroes Be Able to Find Their Friend Who Has Mysteriously Disappeared in Africa?(1968) Police Chief Pepe (1969) The Pizza Triangle (1970) My Name Is Rocco Papaleo (1971) The Most Wonderful Evening of My Life (1972) Trevico-Turin: Voyage in Fiatnam (1973) Festival Unità (1973) – documentary We All … Read more Ettore Scola (1931-2016)

Fatema Mernissi (1940-2015)

Sad news this: Fatema Mernissi was a major voice for women inthe Maghreb over the years — I found that her books were also very useful to wake up my American students. Her memoir Dreams of Trespass: Tales of a Harem Girlhood is a must read. Thanks to Arab Literature (in English). BY MLYNXQUALEY on NOVEMBER 30, 2015 • ( 1 ) Born in 1940, in Fes, Mernissi was … Read more Fatema Mernissi (1940-2015)

Gamal al-Ghitani (1945-2015)

Towering Egyptian Novelist and Cultural Critic, Gamal al-Ghitani, Dies at Age 70 BY MLYNXQUALEY on OCTOBER 18, 2015 • ( 3 ) Acclaimed Egyptian novelist and journalist Gamal al-Ghitani has died in a Cairo military hospital, aged 70: He had been in a coma in al-Galaa Military Hospital for two months after being admitted with respiratory problems. He reportedly suffered a heart attack in August and was deprived of oxygen. According to Al … Read more Gamal al-Ghitani (1945-2015)

Denis Roche (1937-2015)

Oh, Denis has called it splitsville! Sadness, a drag — A bright, witty, generous man, sharp as a tack — & absolutely not known enough here in the US. Roche, who started in the surrounds of Tel Quel, is a major writer, an excellent translator (some of Pound’s Cantos, ee cummings, etc.) & photographer. He is also the founding editor of Fiction & Co, one of the very best & most eclectic … Read more Denis Roche (1937-2015)