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Randa Aboubakr

“Yamna” by Abdul-Rahman al-Abnudi

[Abdul-Rahman al-Abnudi. Image from]

[Egyptian colloquial poetry occupies an ambivalent, if not dubious, status in the Arabic literary canon. Whereas it is largely absent in school syllabi and programs of Arabic literature at institutions of higher education in Egypt, critics and researchers tend to deal with it as an instance of folklore, oral poetry, or popular culture, rather than as simply part of the rich corpus of Arabic poetry. This has often resulted in quarantining the study of this kind of poetry in ...

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Randa Aboubakr


Randa Aboubakr is professor of English and comparative literature at Cairo University. She has published a number of studies on English literature, Egyptian colloquial poetry, sub-Saharan African literature, comparative literature, cultural theory, and translation. Author of The Conflict of Voices in the Poetry of Dennis Brutus and Maḥmūd Darwīsh. (Wiesbaden: Reichert Verlag, 2004). Her most recent research is on “The Role of New Media in the Egyptian Revolution of 2011: Visuality as an Agent of Change,” in Popular Culture in the Middle East and North Africa: A Postcolonial Outlook (New York, Routledge, forthcoming 2012). Has some published literary translations from and into into English and Arabic, among which are a translation of Ahmad Bakhiet’s Laila: The Honey of Solitude into English (published by Zaweil Publications, Cairo, 1999) and a translation of Amy Tan's The Joy Luck Club into Arabic (published by Azminah, Amman, Jordan, 2007). Has been fellow of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation in Germany, and visiting Professor at Freie Universitaet zu Berlin-Germany and the Jagiellonian University of Krakow-Poland.