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When the Library Was Stolen


Publisher: Fehras Publishing Practices
Hardcover: 544 pages
Dimensions: 240 x 170 mm
Language: Bilingual: English/Arabic

In 2015 the private library of the author and novelist Abd Al-Rahman Munif was burglarized in his residence in Damascus. Munif is considered as one of the most renowned authors and novelists in the Arab world. During his lifetime, he lived in various Arabic and European countries settling in Damascus the last thirty years of his life until his death in 2004. He has published numerous books, novels and studies in the field of literature.

In the thick contents of Abd Al-Rahman Munif’s library we can read the political and cultural movements of the Eastern Mediterranean and North Africa. In that regard, it is a distinctive case study for a research into the archives of the Arab private library, a central hub for publications. Munif’s biography and his migrations represent finely the trajectories of the Arab intellectual and of his library: Munif was a Saudi writer who relocated and migrated continuously between different countries his entire life. He was also a collector of books. In every place he settled, he set up a personal library at home. His peregrinations began in the 1940s and lasted until the late 1980s. Munif lost some of his libraries, but he managed to bring most of them to Damascus, to his main library, enriched by all the changing historical eras and cultural lives he experienced. Munif’s library uncovers the metamorphosis of knowledge production and publishing practices in Eastern Mediterranean and North Africa region.

The book is based on a long-term research by Fehras Publishing Practices followed by cataloging it’s content that counts approx. 10.000 publications.


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