Fadia Faqir



Fadia Faqir
(فادية فقير) is a Jordanian/British writer based in Durham, UK. Her work was translated into fifteen languages and published in eighteen countries. Her third novel My Name is Salma (USA title The Cry of the Dove)  was published by Doubleday in 2007.


The prologue of her fourth novel, At the Midnight Kitchen (forthcoming), was published in Weber Studies and won their fiction award 2009. She is a Writing Fellow at St Aidan's College, Durham University, where she teaches creative writing.

(From FadiaFaqir.com)

Publications: (English)

  • At the Midnight Kitchen (forthcoming): A novel set in a block of flats in Hammersmith, London, where a group of people from different backgrounds, ethnicities and religions live. The shady figure in flat number two is stabbed to death. The narrative follows the lives of the residents and explores the reasons for the murder. There is violence, self-hate, guilt, love, pursuit of redemption, compassion, humour and forgiveness.
  • My Name is Salma (US title The Cry of the Dove): “This is a beautiful book, written in vivid, tender prose, about creating a new world when you have lost everything that matters. Salma is an unforgettable character, fierce and loving, veering between self-hatred and a sense of her own strength, touching and funny by terms. Now I have finished the book, I miss her.” Maggie Gee, author of the Orange Prize–shortlisted The White Family (on the cover), 2007
  • Pillars of Salt: “This is a powerful and distinctive piece of writing, melding the recent history of the country [Jordan] with the continuing personal and political oppression of Arab women.” Pam Barrett, The Sunday Times
  • Nisanit :  “Nisanit is one of the saddest, most tragic, painful, and depressing books I have read in a long time. Told in a passionate, breathtaking, masterful style by Fadia Faqir . . . Nisanit is her first novel and it shows real talent and mastery at storytelling.” Evelyne Accad, University of Illinois, World Literature Today, Spring, 1991
  • In the House of Silence: An edited volume, co-translated with Shirly Ebber, Garnet Publishing Ltd., Reading, 1998
  • The Separation Wall: A short story, in Bound, New Writing North, 2004, and in Magnetic North, 2005
  • Purple Heart: A short story, in Home, ISIS Arts and Northern Print Studio, December, 2004
  • Sofia Blues: A collection of short meditations in poetic prose, written in Sofia, Bulgaria, in Magnetic North, New Writing North, 2005
  • Turn Your Head Not: A play initiated by Danish director Malene From for Café Theatret, Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Salma,Ya Salma!: A monologue, part of a play entitled 1001 Nights Now, written together with Inas el-Deghedy, Atiq Rahimi, Bahram Beyzaie, Murathan Mungan, Alfred Farag, Paul Mattar, Raja Amari, Maziar Bahari, and Lenin el-Ramly.
  • Short plays part of 1001 Nights Now, which was devised by Alan Lyddiard and was based on an original concept by Betty Nansen Theatre, Copenhagen

Chapters in Books:

  • “Tales of War: Arab Women in the Eye of the Storm” in The Gulf Between US, ed., Victoria Brittain, Virago Press, London, 1991, pp. 61-77
  • “Western Celebration and Arab Outrage” in Beyond the Gulf War, ed., John Gittings, The Catholic Institute for International Relations, London, 1991
  • “In Search of Andalusia: Arabic Literature Today” in The Atlas of Literature, ed., Malcolm Bradbury, De Agostini Editions, London, 1996, pp. 291-294
  • “Is Pillars of Salt a Muslim Tale?” in English and Islam: Creative Encounters 96, eds., Jalal Uddin Khan and Adrian Hare, International Islamic University of Malaysia, 1998, pp. 123-137
  • “Dimuqratiyyat bidun Dimuqratiyya? al-Mar?a al-Arabiyya wa al-Muwatana” (Women Democrats without Democracy? Arab women and Citizenship) in Al-Muwatana wa al-Dimuqratiyya fi al-Buldan al-„Arabiyya (Democracy and Citizenship in Arab Countries), Markaz Darasat al-Wihdah al-„Arabiyya, Beirut, 2001, pp 181-217 (Discussed by Abdul Hamid Isma?il al-Ansari)

Contributions to Journals:

  • “Occupied Palestine: the writer as Eyewitness” (Review Article) Third World Quarterly, Vol. 9, No. 4, October, 1987, pp. 1495-1409
  • “Engendering Democracy and Islam” Third World Quarterly, Vol. 18, No. 1, 1997, pp.165-174
  • “Arab Democracy Minus Women: Gender, Democracy and Citizenship in Jordan” Asian Women, Vol. 11, 2000, pp. 61-89
  • “Intrafamily femicide in defence of honour: the case of Jordan” Third World Quarterly, Vol. 22, No. 1, 2001, pp. 65-82
  • “Dimuqratiyyat bidun Dimuqratiyya? al-Mar?a al-Arabiyya wa al-Muwatana” (Women Democrats Without Democracy: Arab women and citizenship) Al-Mustaqbal journal, Vol. 24, No. 271, July-September, 2001, pp. 28-55
  • “My Name is Salma” Lisan, No. 5, 2008, pp. 96-103 (German)
  • “Al-Qaeda?s Kitchen” Weber: The Contemporary West, Vol. 25, No. 1, Fall 2008, pp 104-111 * Won Weber fiction award 2009
  • “Mr. Sufian Didan: Il-Doctoor Meets Monique” Moving Worlds: A Journal of Transcultural Writing, Vol. 19, No.2, 2009, pp. 114-122

Non-Academic Journals, Magazines, Radio and web publishing:

  • Centre for Transcultural Writing and Research, University of Lancaster, 2008
  • “The images and texts displayed here communicate the experience of contemporary wars from perspectives in the North of England. Reflected in these new commissions are the ways in which contemporary armed conflicts touch individuals and communities.”
  • “Lost in Translation: The Arab book in the language of the 'other'”
  • Index on Censorship, Volume 33, issue 211, April, 2004
  • “Where is the 'W' factor? Women and the war on Afghanistan”
  • OpenDemocracy, 27 February, 2002
  • “In Search of a Jasmine Tree”
  • A 28-minute long radio programme, written and presented for BBC Radio 4, September, 1998
  • “L?Islam e le sue guerriere” (The Unknown War of Arab Women) MondoOperaio, No. 1, January, 1992, pp. 36-38
  • “Beyond the Desert Storm: Western Attitudes to the Arab World” Planet journal, No. 85, February/March, 1990, pp. 3-8
  • Arab Women Writers Series: As the general editor of the Arab Women Writers series, Fadia Faqir commissioned, edited and wrote critical introductions for the following five novels, which were published by Garnet Publishing between April 1995-April 1996:
    • Barakat, Hoda, The Stone of Laughter
    • Naana, Hamida, The Homeland
    • Bakr, Salwa, The Golden Chariot
    • Badr, Liana, The Eye of the Mirror
    • Mamdouh, Alia, Mothballs
      *The series awarded The Women in Publishing New Venture Award 1995

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Fadia Faqir


Dr Claire Chambers interviews Fadia Faqir

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