#GlobalPRIDELitMonth: LGBTQ2IA+ Authors from the Middle East and North Africa

Writing from within the Middle East and North Africa and in diaspora, these LGBTQ2IA+ authors are sharing their stories.

God in Pink by Hasan Namir. English. Arsenal Pulp Press.

From Iraqi-Canadian poet and writer, Namir’s novel follows Ramy, a young gay man living in Baghdad in 2003. Facing pressure to marry, Ramy seeks advice from his community and questions his own belief system. LAMBDA Literary Award Winner.

Disoriental by Négar Djavadi, translated from French by Tina A. Kover. Europa Editions.

Iranian-born Djavadi’s first novel follows Kimiâ Sadr who left Iran for France as a young girl. Now as a young woman, Kimiâ’ memories and ancestor’s stories are overwhelming her. This lively novel weaves together personal stories of family with Iranian history, politics, culture. Lambda Literary Award winner.

Another Morocco: Selected Stories by Abdullah Taïa, translated from French by Rachel Small. Semiotext(e).

As the first openly gay writer to be published in Morocco, this short story collection compiles story written before he publicly came out. Through these stories, the reader wanders into working-class Moroccan life, family tensions and obligations, all set amongst the cities and neighbourhoods of Taïa’s upbringing.

The Clotheslines Swing by Danny Ramadan. English. Nightwood Editions. 

As his first published work in English, The Clothesline Swing tells the epic story of two lovers who flee from Syria to Canada. Now elderly Hakawati, the storyteller in the couple, tells stories each night to his dying lover. A Lambda Literary Award Nominee, you can read the #GlobalPRIDELitMonth review here.

Guapa by Saleem Haddad. English. Europa Editions.

Written by the truly international Saleem Haddad, Guapa takes place in an anonymous Arab country, set over 24 hours. Rasa, a gay man, usually spends his days translating for foreign journalists and pining for his lover, Taymour. When his grandmother catches them in bed together, Rasa spends the next day avoiding his grandmother and roaming the city. Winner of the Polari First Book Prize.

The Others, Seba al-Herz (pseudonym), translated from Arabic by Unknown. Seven Stories Press.

A bestseller when it was published in Arabic, The Others tells the story of an unnamed Shi’i woman living in Saudi Arabia as a college student. Delving into political oppression, religion and lesbian experimentation, the novel’s writer and translator are unknown. You can read the #GlobalPRIDELitMonth review here.


Guest Editor of #GlobalPRIDELitMonth and Writer: Anita Fata (she, her, hers) is currently pursuing a Master in Libraries and Information Studies at the University of British Columbia’s iSchool. A daughter of European immigrants, she is a first generation Canadian settler, living and working on the ancestral, traditional and unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations in what is now called Vancouver, BC, Canada. Fascinated by the pitfalls of cataloguing, she also spends too much time thinking about translated literature and LGBT2QIA+ authors while volunteering atOut on the Shelves Library. Find her on Twitter @anita_if

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