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May 31, 2012 8:00 am

Arab Author Cancels Book on Women’s Voices Due to Israeli Involvement

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Book case. Photo: flickr via the authors space.

After withdrawing her manuscript from a University of Texas anthology of women’s voices from the Middle East because two of the 29 writers were Israeli, Arab novelist Huzama Habayeb caused the volume’s cancelation by convincing a total of 12 writers to withdraw their contributions.

Habayeb—born in Kuwait, raised in Jordan and currently living in Dubai—called “Palestine” her homeland when complaining to the university’s Center for Middle Eastern Studies about the inclusion of Israelis Yehudit Hendel and Orly Castel-Bloom in the book.

Israel is “an allegedly legitimate literary Middle Eastern component that desperately seeks acceptance, notwithstanding its ‘genocidal’ practices against Palestinians,” Habayeb said, according to FrontPage Magazine.

“All the Arab writers whom I managed to contact withdrew their contributions,” she said. The Dubai-based Gulf News wrote in a May 25 editorial that Habayeb’s actions “are those of a resistance fighter—never giving an inch to Israel, which has illegally occupied her homeland.”

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