Middle East

‘Bayou and Laila’ (Libya)

Out in May, how about a sneak preview from our English Pen award winning book Writing Revolution?

Bayou and Laila (Writing Revolution)

As you may or may  or may not know, Writing Revolution (out May 2013) was awarded the English PEN Translation Award for 2013. The book, edited by Layla Al-Zubaidi and Matthew Cassel, is a remarkable collection of accounts, entirely composed by participants in, and witnesses to, the Arab Spring.

Recorded on July 19th 2012 at the Gate Theatre in Notting Hill after a performance of Hassan Abdulrazzak’s play The Prophet, actor Karim Scott read Mohamed Mesrati’s account of the uprisings in Libya, ‘Bayou and Laila’.

Writing from exile in the UK, Mohamed Mesrati juxtaposes the mundane oppression of growing up under dictatorship with the brutality of the Gaddhafi regime, and the fear and thrill of rising against this system last year. Funny, tender and uncompromising, Mesrati’s testimony is a moving account of when the personal and the political collide.

More details about the Writing Revolution project can be found on our website, but for now, enjoy the reading.

Also, a big thank you must go out to Nye Edwards for filming and editing this, as well as this conversation with Mohamed Mesrati about the Libyan uprisings.

Image courtesy of rahuldlucca.

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