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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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