Fun Facts Friday: Khalil Gibran
Fun Facts Friday , Latest Posts / January 6, 2012

On this day in 1883 Lebanese author, poet and artist Khalil Gibran(January 6, 1883 – April 10, 1931) was born.  Growing up in the United States, Gibran has written in English. Works by Khalil Gibran 1 ) Gibran was born to a Catholic family in the town of Bsharri which is in Northern Lebanon. 2 ) After Gibran’s father went to jail for embezzlement, Kamila Gibran decided to go to her brother in the United States. She left with Khalil, two younger sisters and older half brother to Boston’s South End in 1985 even though Mr. Gibran was released in 1894. 3 ) Due to a clerical error at his school, Gibran’s first name, Gubran, was dropped and hence forth he was known through his middle name, Khalil. 4 ) In 1898 a publisher used some of Gibran’s covers for a book. 5 ) At age 15 Gibran returned to Beirut, Lebanon to study in a prepatory school. There he started a literary magazine and was elected “college poet”. 6 ) Day’s studio in Boston held Gibran’s first art exhibition in 1904. 7 ) Gibran’s poetry is noted for is formal language and insightful thoughts. 8 ) Gibran’s book The Prophet…

Beirut 39: New Writing from the Arab World Edited by Samuel Shimon
Fiction / July 25, 2010

Beirut 39 edited by Samuel Shimon is a collection of stories and poems.  The collection is the product of a literary competition in the Arab world, young authors and poets, all under 40 years of age, competed in a contest sponsored by, among others, Banipal magazine in the Hay festival. The best 39 short stories, poems and novel parts were published. Buy Beirut 39 from*  The stories and poems touch on many varied subjects, politics, sexuality and culture. The selections are as individual as the authors and tell such tales as the wife of a Damascus man who is measuring, for good or bad, her various lovers; or the man who hides his gay identity from his mother while watching a movie about the subject on satellite, hoping she wouldn’t wake up. There were two standout stories I thought, in this book which were a cut above the rest: “The Twentieth [9/11] Terrorist” by Abdullah Thabit and the straight-to-the-point “Coexistence” by Ala Hlehel. Both stories were told from a very believable and vivid point of view which I found refreshing as well as enlightening on an intellectual level. “The Twentieth [9/11] Terrorist” tells of the harsh system of education…

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