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The Butterfly's Burden Paperback – 10 Nov 2007

4.6 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 344 pages
  • Publisher: Bloodaxe Books Ltd (10 Nov. 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1852247886
  • ISBN-13: 978-1852247881
  • Product Dimensions: 15.3 x 2.4 x 22.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 209,201 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description


The land that Palestinians and Israelis uneasily share has produced work to counter the propaganda on both sides. Mahmoud Darwish's poetry pays eloquent testimony to the world his family lost in 1948. (The Butterfly's Burden, 2007, is in facing-page translation.) --Sameer Rahim, Literary Guide to the Middle East, The Sunday Telegraph

Mahmoud Darwish is one of the two or three most admired, and widely read poets from the Arab world... While unequivocally anchored in the present, his poems draw on the traditions of Al-Andalus, the near-mythical site of flowering Arab, European and Sephardic Jewish art and science - as much in Darwish's re-creation and renewal of Arabic prosody and inweaving of legend as in his fraternal openness to and exchange with poets like Ritsos and Neruda. In the brilliant, bilingual poet Fady Joudah, Darwish has found a translator capable of rendering in English his unflinching, questing, and above all loving poems. --Marilyn Hacker

Like a kind of scientist, Mahmoud Darwish spent his life concocting Palestinian national identity, though its links to the land, and to the Arabic language and culture, were established long before him. In his poetry he tried to link that identity to a humanist global culture, to pre-Arab and pre-Islamic cultures of the Middle East, and to those details of human life that are beautiful in any culture or place. --Mourid Barghouti, Guardian


Mahmoud Darwish is the poetic voice of the Palestinian people. One of the most acclaimed contemporary poets in the Arab world, he is also a prominent spokesman for human rights who has spent most of his life in exile. Returning to Palestine in 1996, he settled in Ramallah, where he surprised his huge following in the Arab world by writing a book of love, "The Stranger's Bed" (1998), singing of love as a private exile, not about exile as a public love. "A State of Siege" (2002) was his response to the second Intifada, his testament not only to human suffering but to art under duress, art in transmutation. The 47 short lyrics of "Don't Apologise for What You've Done" (2003) form a transfiguring incarnation or incantation of the poet after the carnage. "The Butterfly's Burden" is a translation of these three recent books.

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4.6 out of 5 stars

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20 August 2015
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Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars 9 reviews
5.0 out of 5 starsIncredible.
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5.0 out of 5 starsHighly recommend!
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M. Gregorio
5.0 out of 5 starsAn important book to have if you love poetry
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Ethar Zaher
5.0 out of 5 starsStunning translation and beautiful poetry
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