About Andalus Publishing

Andalus Publishing is a progressive and independent Israeli publishing house dedicated to the translation of Arabic literature and prose into Hebrew.

Andalus, the site of the "golden age" of Islamic and Jewish thought, where Arabic and Jewish cultures fed and fertilized one another was also an epoch known for its literary and intellectual output by some of the greatest Muslim and Jewish philosophers, theologians, and poets. It was a period during which texts were translated and ideas exchanged freely from Arabic to Hebrew and vice versa.

Despite Israel's location in the heart of the Arab world, Hebrew-reading Israelis remain, for the most part, unexposed to Arabic culture in general, and Arabic literature and thought in particular. It is nearly impossible to find translations of narratives that might enable the Hebrew reader to understand Arab societies and the various, complex experiences that shape the lives of the people who comprise them. The quantity and variety of existing translations is insufficient, especially as compared with the wealth of works translated into Hebrew from European languages. Andalus Publishing seeks to fill this vacuum by translating books that will cover social, cultural, and political issues as expressed through Arabic literary, poetic, and expository writings.

Andalus is of the opinion that since the advent of the (now defunct) peace process more than a decade ago a meaningful shift occurred in the pattern of Israeli cultural consumption. This shift was especially pronounced among young Israelis (of both European/American and North African/Middle Eastern origins), whose openness toward, and curiosity about, the Arab world reached an all time high. Thus, it follows that if two decades ago it was nearly impossible to purchase Arabic music in Israeli stores, today any self-respecting Israeli music shop carries a wide variety of classical and modern Arabic music from Morocco to Iraq, Lebanon to Sudan. In the realm of literature, however, things are more difficult since the number of Arabic-reading Israeli Jews has decreased rather than increased over the years.

Unfortunately, the past seven years have seen this positive trend come to a halt; Israeli attitudes about Arabs (across the political spectrum) have regressed into the basest forms of racism and xenophobia (nonetheless, at Andalus we refuse to capitulate to such negative forces, and remain committed to providing the goods, even if interest in these imperative cultural products has waned).

Books Published

To date Andalus has published 22 titles: the Palestinian Mahmoud Darwish's Why Have You Left the Horse Alone, Mural, and State of Siege; the Lebanese Elias Khoury's Bab al-Shams and Yalo; the Moroccan Muhammad Choukri's For Bread Alone; the Lebanese Hanan al-Shaykh's The Story of Zahra and I Sweep the Sun off Rooftops; the Sudanese Al-Tayyeb Saleh's The Wedding of Zein and BandarShah; a bilingual poetry anthology by the Palestinian Taha Muhammad 'Ali translated by Anton Shammas; the Lebanese Hoda Barakat's The Stone of Laughter and The Tiller of Waters; the Palestinian Serene Husseini Shahid's Jerusalem Memories; the Palestinian Jabra Ibrahim Jabra's The First Well; the Moroccan Muhammad Barada's Like a Summer that Never Recurred; the Moroccan-Jew Sami Shalom Chetrit's Poems in Ashdodian; a catalog of work by nine Palestinian women artists titled Self Portrait, and three Artist Books by the Palestinian Sharif Waked: Chic Point, Jericho First and Melancholia (all art books were published in tri-lingual editions-Arabic, Hebrew and English).

To contact Andalus with questions or order books please feel free to write us at: info@andalus.co.il