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Mona Kareem & The Operating System

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Mona Kareem (translator) is a poet, translator, and journalist based in New York. She is the author of three poetry collections, some of which were translated into French, English, Spanish, Dutch, German, Farsi, Italian and Kurdish. Mona is a doctoral candidate in the Comparative Literature program at Binghamton University. Her dissertation explores issues of subalternity in the Arab feminist novel. She teaches writing classes while freelancing for a number of Arabic publications. Her translation of Palestinian poet Ashraf Fayadh’s collection Instructions Within is forthcoming from The Operating System.

The Operating System (publisher) is an arts organization based in New York City that supports a small press and magazine—as well as a robust online platform—documenting a wide range of creative practitioners and projects. The press’s Glossarium: Unsilenced Texts and Modern Translations series, curated by publisher Lynne DeSilva-Johnson, aims to “recover silenced texts outside and beyond the familiar poetic canon . . . in particular those under siege by restrictive regimes and silencing practices in their home (or adopted) country.” The first series title, Ashraf Fayadh’s Instructions Within, will be published in a bilingual Arabic-English edition with a forward by Ahmed Kehdr. Ammiel Alcalay and a team of scholars collectively transcribed the original text, which was then translated by Mona Kareem with contributions by Mona Zaki and Jonathan Wright, and artist Ahmed Mater located images of Ashraf’s paintings, which will accompany the poems. A UK edition, in print and ebook, will be published by PEN UK. Future series titles include Gregory Randall’s memoir of Cuba To Have Been There Then and Cuban poet Israel Dominguez’s collection Return Trip, both translated by Margaret Randall.

Photo: Mona Kareem (left) and Lynne DeSilva-Johnson (right)

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