The Sheikh Zayed Book Award unveils its Cultural Programme at Abu Dhabi International Book Fair 2021
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates – 18 May 2021: Under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, the 30th edition of the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair (ADIBF) will be held between 23 and 29 May 2021. In advance of its participation at ADIBF, the Sheikh Zayed Book Award (SZBA) has revealed its cultural programme during the week of the fair, which will comprise panel discussions involving winners of both its 14th and 15th editions.
Sheikh Zayed Book Award will commence its cultural programme with a virtual ceremony, which will be held on 24 May at 6pm GST/2pm GMT to honour 2021’s winners across eight categories. The ceremony will be livestreamed on SZBA’s YouTube channel and broadcast on ADBIF’s Main Stage in Hall 9 at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC)..
SZBA will be hosting a selection of its winners in a physical seminar, which will be held in Hall 9 at ADNEC on 25 May at 7pm, in the presence of HE Dr. Ali bin Tamim, Secretary General of Sheikh Zayed Book Award and Chairman of Abu Dhabi Arabic Language Centre, with the participation of winners of the Award’s 14th and 15th editions. The session will be moderated by Dr. Khalil Al Sheikh, a researcher, critic and translator and a member of SZBA’s Scientific Committee.
Participants will include winners from the previous edition, including Margaret Obank from Banipal magazine, winner of the Publishing and Technology award, Tunisian poet Moncef Ouhaibi, winner of the Literature award, Tunisian translator Mohamed Ait Mihoub, winner of the Translation award, Iraqi author Hayder Qasim, winner of the Young Author award and Dutch author Richard van Leeuwen, winner of the Arabic Culture in Other Languages award.
The session will also be attended by winners of this year’s edition of SZBA: Saudi writer Asmaa Al Ahmadi, winner of the Young Author award, Tunisian author Mizouni Bannani, winner of the Children’s Literature award, Egyptian author Dr. Saeed Al Masry, winner of the Contribution to the Development of Nations award, Tunisian writer Khelil Gouia, winner of the Literary and Art Criticism award and Dr. Tahera Qutubddin from the USA, winner of the Arabic Culture in Other Languages award. American translator Michael Cooperson, winner of the Translation award, Egyptian author Iman Mersal, winner of the Literature award and Rasha Al Ameer of Dar Al Jadeed, winner of the Publishing and Technology award, will participate remotely.
On 26 May, Egyptian author Iman Mersal, winner of the 2021 Literature award for her novel Fee Athar Enayat Al-Zayyat (In the Footsteps of Enayat Al-Zayyat), will be participating in a virtual session at 7pm, in conversation with Asma Siddiq Al Mutawaa, Founder and Chair of Abu Dhabi's Al Multaqa Literary Salon.
On 27 May, SZBA will host a virtual session titled ‘Sheikh Zayed Book Award – a recurring dream every year’ at 7pm, featuring Tunisian author Mizouni Bannani, winner of the 2021 Children’s Literature award for his book Rehlat Fannan (An Artist's Journey), speaking about the Sheikh Zayed Book Award and children’s literature, the origin and significance of his book Rehlat Fannan, and the extent to which he was influenced by the book Kalila wa Dimna. The session will be moderated by Dr. Sarah Salem Al Suwaidi, Director of the Curriculum Department at the Department of Education and Knowledge.
SZBA will conclude its cultural programme with a virtual panel discussion titled ‘Islamic Theology and Society: Arab and German Perspectives’, which will be organised in collaboration with Litprom on 28 May at 7pm with the participation of Ulrich Rudolph, a Professor of Islamic Studies at the University of Zürich; Farid Suleiman, a researcher at the Department of Islamic Religious Studies at Friedrich-Alexander-University Erlangen-Nuremberg (FAU) in Germany; Dr. Hayder Qasim Al Tameemi, an Iraqi author and academic who teaches in the Department of History at the University of Baghdad and winner of SZBA’s 2020 Young Author award; Mira Sievers, a junior professor of Islamic Foundations of Belief, Philosophy and Ethics at the Berlin Institute for Islamic theology at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin; and Stephan Milich, a lecturer in Arabic and Islamic Studies at the Institute of Oriental Studies (University of Cologne).
The panellists will explore the complex interrelationship between theology and society in both the history of classical Islam and our contemporary world. The starting point for the discussion will be the outstanding monograph ‘Islamic Theology in the Studies of German Orientalists, with particular focus on Josef van Ess’ oeuvre’, by last year’s SZBA winner Hayder Qasim, an Iraqi historian of religion. Participants will also examine how Iraqi and Arab scholars compare the contributions of German Islamic Studies to the study of Islamic theology and what the central topics and debates are, both in Iraq and the Arab world and Germany regarding Islamic theology and society.
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About the Department of Culture and Tourism - Abu Dhabi
The Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi) drives the sustainable growth of Abu Dhabi’s culture and tourism sectors, fuels economic progress and helps achieve Abu Dhabi’s wider global ambitions. By working in partnership with the organisations that define the Emirate’s position as a leading international destination, DCT Abu Dhabi strives to unite the ecosystem around a shared vision of the Emirate’s potential, coordinate effort and investment, deliver innovative solutions, and use the best tools, policies and systems to support the culture and tourism industries.
DCT Abu Dhabi’s vision is defined by the Emirate’s people, heritage and landscape. We work to enhance Abu Dhabi’s status as a place of authenticity, innovation, and unparalleled experiences, represented by its living traditions of hospitality, pioneering initiatives and creative thought.
About Sheikh Zayed Book Award
The Sheikh Zayed Book Award commemorates the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, Founding President of the UAE and Ruler of Abu Dhabi, and his pioneering role in promoting national unity and development. The Award, and its associated accolades, are presented annually to outstanding writers, intellectuals, and publishers, as well as young talent whose writing and translation in humanities objectively enriches Arab intellectual, cultural, literary and social life.
The Sheikh Zayed Book award is an independent cultural initiative administered by Department of Culture and Tourism - Abu Dhabi.