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Abu Dhabi Arabic Center announces Gold Narrative Award Higher Committee

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Abu Dhabi, UAE: The Abu Dhabi Arabic Center (ALC), which is part of the Abu Dhabi Department of Culture and Tourism (DCT Abu Dhabi), has announced the membership of its new ‘Golden Narrative’ (Sard Al Thahab) High Committee for the award Launched in December 2022, it recognizes outstanding work in the Arabic prose genre by local and international creatives.

The Golden Narrative Award (Sard Al Thahab) aims to illuminate Emirati folklore and narrative, highlighting inspiring work in the field and honoring talented storytellers who help preserve the history, way of life and culture of the UAE through this art form . A popular legacy for decades.

The High Commission brings together experts in the fields of literary criticism and cultural narrative, libraries and archives, short fiction, popular culture, and Arabic language and literature. The team is headed by His Excellency Abdullah Majid Ali, Director-General of the National Library and Archives. Members are Bahraini scholar and critic Dr. Dheya Al Kaabi; Egyptian author Dr. Miral al-Tahavi; Emirati director, writer and producer Nasser Al Dhaheri; and Dr. Saïd Yaktine, Moroccan narrator and critic. AS PhD researcher, academic and literary critic Khalil Al Sheikh served as the committee’s rapporteur.

HE Al Ali said: “The Golden Narrative Award is an exciting addition to the UAE’s cultural landscape, enriching the realm of storytelling and reflecting our nation’s unique identity by highlighting local values, customs and heritage.” The award recognizes and supports creative minds and will contribute to their important work in preserving and passing on the UAE’s folk heritage, which is in line with the Center’s mission and Abu Dhabi’s overall cultural vision. We hope it will create an environment for creativity and innovation A productive environment that encourages talent across all literary disciplines.”

The Senior Committee recently held its first meeting to discuss the nomination process and criteria for selecting winners, and to review the internal processes and functions of the award.

The six categories of the award are the Short Story Prize, which evaluates, recognizes and publishes the unpublished work of talented authors, and the Short Story Anthology Prize, which recognizes published Emirati or Arabic stories inspired by heritage.

The Popular Narrative Award recognizes collections of popular folk tales that build shared memory and contribute to the formation of cultural identity, or renowned research that analyzes these stories, while the Narrator and Biographer Award recognizes narratives from popular literature and biographies in the UAE and the wider region or the Arab world.

The Illustrated Story Prize selects narratives that rely on imagery in their structure, blending narrative and graphic art, while the Emirati Storytelling Prize recognizes literature that explores Emirati identity and is inspired by the country’s history, geography and symbols.

Biographies of Senior Committee Members

His Excellency Abdullah Majid Ali

Over the past 27 years, His Excellency Abdullah Majid Ali has held a number of key positions in the fields of media, culture and heritage. This includes serving as Executive Director of the National Archives, Executive Director of ‘Dar Al Kutub’ and Library Management at DCT Abu Dhabi, and Acting Executive Director of the ALC from January 2021. HE Al Ali has held various positions at DCT Abu Dhabi over the years and has had great success managing flagship projects such as the Sheikh Zayed Book Award (SZBA), Kalima Translation Project, ‘Esdarat’ Publishing Initiative and Abu Dhabi International Book Fair (ADIBF). In addition, he oversaw the establishment of the Qasr al Watan Library at the Presidential Palace in Abu Dhabi, and played an important role as a member of several committees, including the National Archives Board, the SZBA Board and the Board of Directors for the International Prize for Arabic Fiction.

Dr Dia Alkabi

Dr Dheya Al Kaabi is Head of the Department of Arabic and Islamic Studies at the University of Bahrain. A scholar and critic specializing in cultural narratives, the history of critical thought, discourse analysis, feminist studies, the study of narratives old and new, and popular culture, Dr. Al Kaabi is currently working on the Cultural Narratives Project she founded.She holds a Doctor of Philosophy in Arabic Language and its Literature from the University of Jordan, has won several local and regional awards and has published a series of books, including Ancient Arabic Narratives: Cultural Models and Argumentative Interpretations; Popular Arabic Narrative and Cultural Representations and Interpretations. Dr AS Al Kaabi also contributed five books to the project ‘Uyun al Shi’r al Arabi’Published by ALC and has published several research papers in peer-reviewed journals in the field of cultural narratives and modern literary criticism.

Dr Miral Tahavi

Dr. Miral al-Tahawy is an award-winning Egyptian creative writer, internationally recognized for her novels and short stories and her astonishing record of scholarship and service. She is currently an affiliate member of the Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing at Arizona State University, and is an active associate professor of modern Arabic literature and chair of the Department of Classical and Middle Eastern Studies (SILC) in the School of International Letters and Cultures.

Nasser Daheri

Nasser Al Dhaheri leads several Arab and foreign newspapers, magazines and publications.He wrote an article for the UAE newspaper Al-Ittihad titled “Eighth Column” In 20 years, 14 books have been published, including stories, novels, articles and research. Al Dhaheri has won numerous literary and media awards at the local, Arab and international levels, including Taryam Omran Tarim Award for Best Columnist, Arab News Awards for Best Arabic Columnist, Medal of Appreciation for Best Emirati Creator in the GCC, and Emirati Pioneer medal. Al Dhaheri works in the field of film as a writer, producer and director.his feature length documentaries (About water life…palm trees…and people) won 21 international awards.

PhD Jacques Dine says

Moroccan narratologist and critic Dr. Saïd Yaktine received a national doctorate from the Mohammed V University in Rabat, where he has also taught at the Faculty of Arts and Sciences since 1985. He is a member of various journal advisory bodies in Morocco and the Arab world and serves on the jury for numerous Arab awards. Dr. Yaktine was awarded Morocco’s highest literary award in 1989 and 1997, Jordan’s Abd al-Hamid Shuman Award in 1992, and the 2016 SZBA Prize in the Literary and Art Critic category for his work Al-Fikr al-Adabi al-Arabi (Arabic Literary Thought). He has published more than 20 books on various aspects of Arabic fiction writing, ancient Arabic narratives, narrative theory, social criticism and digital literature.

Dr Khalil Sheikh

Dr. Khalil al Sheikh is Professor of Arabic Language and Literature at Yarmouk University, Jordan. He has been a visiting professor at several renowned academic institutions, has published more than 25 peer-reviewed studies, and has written numerous books on comparative literature, literary criticism, storytelling, and autobiography.In addition, Dr. Al Sheikh has translated many well-known children’s and youth books such as Franz Kafka’s Diary “Today the Fox Becomes a Hunter” Nobel Prize-winning German novelists Herta Müller and Ingo Schulz Adam and EvelynGustav Seibut Goethe and Napoleonand Helmut Böttiger beyond utopiaDr. al Sheikh holds a PhD in Critical Comparative Studies from the University of Bonn, West Germany.

About the Golden Narrative Award

The Golden Narrative (Sard Al Thahab) Prize is a new annual award established by the Arabic Language Center in Abu Dhabi to showcase and support Arabic storytelling folk art in the Arab world. The award was created to recognize the rich tradition of storytelling in the Arabic language, including the enduring popularity of popular folktales and legends that are integral to Arab heritage, culture and thought. Through six award categories, including Short Story, Short Story Collection, Popular Narrative, Narrator and Biographer, Illustrated Story, UAE Storytelling, the awards seek to recognize this tradition and support its research and expression in contemporary culture.

About Abu Dhabi Arabic Language Center

The Abu Dhabi Arabic Center was established under the direction of the late Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Abu Dhabi, under the Abu Dhabi Culture and Tourism The ministry is dedicated to supporting the development and modernization of the Arabic language through a comprehensive strategy and framework, enriching the scientific, educational, cultural and creative contributions of the Arabic language, promoting proficiency and cultural understanding in the Arabic language, and supporting Arab talents in writing, translation, development, content creation and organization of book fairs in the fields of publishing, scientific research, art, etc. The Center strives to realize its fundamental vision through dedicated programs, human expertise and meaningful partnerships with the world’s most prestigious technical, cultural and academic institutions.

About the Ministry of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi Department of Culture and Tourism (DCT Abu Dhabi) promotes the sustainable development of Abu Dhabi’s culture, tourism and creative industries, driving economic progress and helping to realize Abu Dhabi’s wider global ambitions. By partnering with organizations that position the emirate as a leading international destination, DCT Abu Dhabi strives to unite the ecosystem around a shared vision of the emirate’s potential, align efforts and investments, deliver innovative solutions, and use the best tools to support the cultural and tourism industries policies and systems.

DCT Abu Dhabi’s vision is defined by the emirate’s people, heritage and landscape. We are committed to elevating Abu Dhabi’s status as a place of authenticity, innovation and unparalleled experiences, represented by its living tradition of hospitality, pioneering innovation and creative thinking.

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