Sarah Irving

I do things with words, mainly English and Arabic

New Review: Gilgamesh’s Snake and Other Poems

The Bottle Imp, 16th June 2016 Ghareeb Iskander’s own transformation of the Gilgamesh epic into a modern poem draws the original’s grandeur down to the personal scale, without rendering it … Continue reading

June 17, 2016 · Leave a comment

Gribetz, “Defining Neighbours”

A few fascinating and thought-provoking excerpts from Jonathan Gribetz’s excellent exploration of intellectual life and perceptions of faith in Late Ottoman and early inter-war Palestine (Defining Neighbors: Religion, Race, and … Continue reading

May 4, 2016 · Leave a comment

The Book of Khartoum

This is exciting (for me…). Comma Press now have copies of The Book of Khartoum, an anthology of Sudanese short stories co-edited by my fellow IMES PhDer Raph Cormack; I … Continue reading

April 13, 2016 · 1 Comment

New review: Love, Theft and Other Entanglements…

Electronic Intifada, 20th July 2015 Mousa, played by Sami Metwasi, is a thief whose latest job is a vehicle which contains a gagged and bound Israeli soldier, something he finds … Continue reading

July 20, 2015 · Leave a comment

Neoliberalism and higher education: a wee example from Edinburgh

As Isabel Lachenauer, one of the first – and possibly the last – graduates of the University of Edinburgh’s Advanced Arabic masters programme writes: I strongly urge the Head of … Continue reading

November 30, 2014 · Leave a comment

A Bird is Not a Stone

Since it has been one of the consuming passions of the last eighteen months of my life, it seems about time that I post something on here about A Bird … Continue reading

May 23, 2014 · 2 Comments

Cats + Istanbul

So, my friend Peter Cherry tells me that there is a film coming out about cats and Istanbul – that is, two of my favourite things combined. I’m not sure … Continue reading

March 10, 2014 · Leave a comment

Edinburgh University Press – binning back-issues, threatens students with arrest

Here is a sequence of minor but very depressing and frustrating events which I witnessed today. 1) about 2.30pm, arriving at my department at the University of Edinburgh on George … Continue reading

October 25, 2013 · 13 Comments

(Paid) research/curatorial internship, Alwaleed Centre, Edinburgh

This very exciting looking ad just came up from the Alwaleed Centre, based in the same department as me at Edinburgh University… Call for research internship applications 10-month part-time research … Continue reading

October 25, 2013 · Leave a comment

New article: Edinburgh exhibits Nakba memorial plans

Electronic Intifada, 10th October 2013 Omar Mohammad is sensitive to the danger that to create a monument to something is to place it in the past, to declare it to … Continue reading

October 11, 2013 · Leave a comment

Why I’m not getting a smartphone (for as long as possible)

One of the few irritations of an absolutely amazing two years on Edinburgh University’s Arab World Studies MSc has been the background pressure to get a smartphone. Or an iPad. … Continue reading

September 3, 2013 · 8 Comments

Poetry from Iraq and Scotland

Sabreen Kadhim, a young poet from Baghdad who very much dispels any myths linking poetry with dowdiness and cardigans, was supposed to appear at Reel Iraq earlier this year. However, … Continue reading

August 17, 2013 · 12 Comments

‘Head over Heels in Saudi Arabia’ at Edinburgh Fringe

Head Over Heels in Saudi Arabia is a one-woman show by Maisah Sobahi, in her day-job a lecturer at a university in Jeddah and now the first ever Saudi performer … Continue reading

August 13, 2013 · 1 Comment

‘Anna’ at the Edinburgh Fringe, Summerhall

At the end of this evening, a mild-mannered man called Keith came up to me as I was unlocking my bike from the Summerhall railings and asked me what I … Continue reading

August 7, 2013 · Leave a comment