Five Short Stories


Mohammad Naffa

Publisher The Van Leer Jerusalem Institute and Dar Layla publishing and translation
Language Hebrew
Year of Publication 2024
Series Maktoob

The booklet before you—Qushan—contains five short stories by the late writer Mohammad Naffa (1940–2021), who is known primarily as a master of the short story. Most of Naffa’s stories were published on platforms of the Israeli Communist Party, mainly in the Arabic-language daily Al-Ittihad and the Al-Jadid literary monthly. His stories have been translated into English, French, Russian, Spanish, German, and other languages. Translations of six of his short stories appeared in Hebrew in the past, two of them in the anthology Amputated Tongue, part of the Maktoob series.

The stories in the current booklet were translated using Maktoob’s translation-by-dialogue model as a correction to the widely used neoclassical model of one translator, one version, one language. The translation was prepared by five groups, each of which had Jewish and Arab translators. The translation was carried out in a three-day Maktoob translation workshop, in September 2023. Translation using this model is not only an act in the realm of literature but also an act in the world, demonstrating the possibilities of a political horizon, even if it sometimes seems distant.

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