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Country of Words Podcast

The PalREAD project’s “Country of Words” podcast is an Arabic-language series of 10 episodes that focus on Palestinian literature. In light of lost, looted, or destroyed archives, the podcast promotes the role of oral literary history in filling the gaps and compensating for the dearth of documentation and records. By speaking to literary and cultural figures from different generations and diverse geographical locations, including Haifa, Jerusalem, Ramallah, Beirut, Damascus, Amman, and Tunis, the podcast documents unwritten dimensions of Palestinian literature and uncovers untold stories. 

Episodes shift between the transnational and exilic contexts of Palestinian literary history before and after the Nakba of 1948. Guests include key literary and cultural figures, featuring: Liana Badr, Mahmoud Shukair, Asmaa Azaizeh, Faisal Darraj, Elias Khoury, Ghassan Zaqtan, Huzama Habayeb, Abed Abdi, Hadi Danyal, Rajaa Ghanem.

In each episode, guests speak about their literary evolution and trajectories, their movements across periods and geographies, their friends, networks, and periodicals they were associated with. Each guest chooses a text to read from their own works or from the corpus of Palestinian literature, discussing their choice. They also each identify and discuss what they consider to be an important work that influenced the course of Palestinian literary history. Finally, many of the guests give us a glimpse into their personal libraries and how their book collections have been affected by censorship, constant movement, loss, and destruction.

Apple Podcasts


PalREAD Writer, Researcher and Producer: Ibrahim Abdou

Concept & Host: Refqa Abu-Remaileh

Press coverage about the podcast:

Arab Lit - Lit & Found: 'Country of Words' Podcast on Palestinian Literature

FU Press Release - “Country of Words”: New Arabic-language Podcast from Research Project PalREAD at Freie Universität Berlin Gives a Voice to Key Figures in Palestinian Literature

FU Pressemitteilung - „Country of Words“: Neuer arabischsprachiger Podcast des Forschungsprojekts PalREAD an der Freien Universität Berlin macht Schlüsselfiguren der palästinensischen Literatur hörbar

Arabic Studies, Freie Universität Berlin - PalREAD podcast launch

India Education Diary - Freie Universitaet Berlin Launches Podcast “Country of Words”


  • podcast,palread,digital humanties,cultural heritage
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