A statement issued by the award organized by the Abu Dhabi Center for the Arabic Language of the Department of Culture and Tourism in Abu Dhabi and considered “one of the most important Arab prizes of value and worth” stated that Mersal’s book “traces the biography of Inayat Al-Zayat, a young Egyptian writer who passed away in the 1960s in tragic circumstances, leaving behind a novel. An orphan is + love and silence. Al-Zayyat committed suicide in 1963.
The jury justified its decision to award the award recipient, that her book, which has been translated into 22 languages (including French by Act Sud), is a “cross-species work,” as it is “based on narration and on methods of scientific research and investigative journalism.”
The committee considered, according to the statement, that the book of the winning author “mixes the heterosexual biography with the subjective in the context of a balanced critical vision that crosses the known sexual horizons, and blends creativity with the document and historical news, to re-read and present a feminist experience in a manner that is issued from a close review within a coherent narrative structure.”
The fifteenth session of the prizes announced by the winners on Thursday under the auspices of the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, witnessed a 23 percent increase in the number of participants compared to the previous session, according to the statement, as it received 2,349 nominations during 2020/2021. .
The Secretary-General of the Award, Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Arabic Language Center, Ali bin Tamim, said that the award “witnessed an exceptional year in terms of the number of nominations and the quality of the work involved despite the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic.”
The prize winners list included seven writers and researchers from Egypt, Tunisia, Saudi Arabia and the United States of America, in addition to a Lebanese publishing house. Each of them won a prize of more than $ 200,000.
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