Five Women Read: An Evening of Poetry and Prose

 

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Join us for a casual and unique night of literary readings at Bardo on Saturday, January 23 from 7-9 PM, with Zeina Hashem Beck, Jehan Bseiso, Lina Mounzer, Rima Rantisi, and Rewa Zeinati.

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Call for Submissions!

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Rusted Radishes: Beirut Literary and Art Journal calls for submissions for its fifth issue, “The Political City: The Human Condition in a Politically Charged Landscape.”
From December 1 – April 1
Looking forward to receiving new pieces for the fifth issue from old and new writers and artists!

Issue 4: TRANS- has LAUNCHED!

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On Friday the 13th, the Beirut community welcomed Rusted Radishes’ fourth issue, “Trans-,” with open arms in a cozy, and humble artsy setting in l’appartement.  The evening was a reminder that art is and will always be a safe sanctuary. The launch party was a great success, with people standing around the room, listening to the readers, chomping on some appetizers, and sipping on wine.

Offering the audience a glimpse of what was inside the journal, every reading, whether it was Nur Turkmani’s dense poem “Ana Katel Nafsi” or Maya Ayache’s brave non-fiction piece, “Toilet Bowl,” touched the audience in a distinct way. Other readings included Christie Chouieri’s “XX” and Lina Mounzer’s translation of  Chaza Charafeddine’s fiction piece, “A Dream Devouring Itself.” The night ended with Reem Chalaan’s reading of “Mango Sorbet” (so nice to meet you, Reem!) and Doyle Avant’s — always sultry — reading of his latest script.

The journal was toasted with wine and refreshments, accompanied by low-key music from the talented Jean Pierre Abillama notably known as JP and booming vocals of Ghida El- Badri, and guitarist Zafer El-Hassan. For those who couldn’t find a seat up at the front and couldn’t hear properly standing in the back, we apologize for the muffled sound system!

It was awesome that we ran out of all 160 journals we brought to the event. That was unexpected! Thanks to our student designers, Chantal Kassarjian and Diana Bou Dakka, for designing our tote bags. Pretty, pretty!

It was refreshing to have a couple of hours dedicated to passionate self-expression and strangers from the Lebanese community gathering for one cause, to support and celebrate the fourth issue — to celebrate art.

Thank you to our sponsors IXSIR and AUB, and to our loyal readers and curious newcomers for celebrating the fourth issue “TRANS-“ with us, and a special thank you to the contributors whose work is showcased in the issue!

We hope to see you again next year and we are eagerly looking forward to receiving new pieces for the fifth issue from old and new writers and artists! Issue five will focus on the theme, “The Political City.” Please check here for more submission details.

For those who missed the launch, journals will be on sale locally by Friday the 28th, and internationally by the end of the year. Here’s where we sell ’em.

A massive thank you to Bahaa Ghoussainy and Wiem Ben Rim for capturing our special night in pictures!

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Launch Party of Issue #4 “TRANS-“

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It is that time of year again! Since 2012, Rusted Radishes: Beirut Literary and Art Journal has been mining and annually publishing literature and art by writers and artists based in Lebanon or abroad, who have a connection to the country. Now, in its fourth circulation, the latest issue entitled TRANS- is soon up for grabs!

Rusted Radishes invites the community to join in supporting the work of exceptional writers and artists published in the journal. Come celebrate the launch of the fourth issue on Friday November 13, at 6:30 pm at l’appartement in Ashrafieh, Sioufi Street. Don’t miss the first chance to see this year’s issue and hear live readings from writers with featured work in the journal. The night will include performances and a live band, accompanied with IXSIR wine, refreshments, and 50 limited edition totes for sale. Don’t miss this opportunity!

Tickets for the launch party will be sold in front of West Hall on Monday, Nov 9, Tuesday, Nov 10 and Wednesday, Nov 11, from 10-1 pm. You may also purchase your ticket at the door. Reservations can be made beforehand via email: info@rustedradishes.com.

Two packages are available:

  • $20 package will include a ticket for the launch, a journal and a tote.
  • $10 package will get you a ticket for the launch party and a journal.

Please note that there are 50 totes available only! They are limited edition and cost $20 on their own, so hurry up and grab the exclusive $20 package! Rusted Radishes is a nonprofit publication and all funds raised will go towards Rusted Radishes operations and publishing the fifth issue in 2016.

Our event is sponsored by the American University of Beirut (AUB), and IXSIR.

Looking forward to seeing you there!

Ongoing Exhibition at Tawlet!

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In case you missed it the first time, the exhibition in Tawlet is ongoing! Journals and Original etchings created by Rusted Radishes artists in collaboration with Fadi Mogabgab and Zaaroura Edition are currently on sale. Stay tuned for the release of the fourth issue coming to Tawlet soon!

Karim Dimechkie Q&A

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Karim Dimechkie, author of the novel Lifted By The Great Nothing, visited Beirut to introduce his debut novel and held book readings around town, including two hosted by Rusted Radishes at the American University of Beirut and Bardo. During his first week in Lebanon, the novel was sold out in all branches of Antoine’s Bookstores, leaving many eager readers regretful of not picking up a copy sooner. Nonetheless, you can still pick it up at Dar Books and Librarie Internationale.

Karim knows how to engage his audience and make them laugh. He piqued his listeners’ interest in the novel, clearly evident with the myriad of questions asked following the readings. But first, everyone was curious about the title. He said that he is particularly interested in titles that “juxtapose believable opposites.” Being lifted represents the idea that there is always an upside to losing what is most important to you in life; something could be gained from loss. In the novel, the experience of grief for the main character is a “vacillation between crippling depression and intense pain, and Max comes out of that experience being the most alive he has ever been, with something positive, something meaningful.”

Lifted By The Great Nothing is a heartwarming and quirky coming-of-age story about a young boy named Max, on a mission to uncover the secret his father kept from him about his country’s and his own past. Throughout the novel, readers are faced with the question of “When is a lie morally acceptable?” – and “Is it ever?” As readers go on an emotional journey with Max, they come to realize that one lie could change a person forever.


 How has life changed for you since the publication of Lifted By The Great Nothing?

There was a lot of build up around the idea of publishing a novel, but to be honest, my life is surprisingly similar to how it was before the book. I still sit in my room all day and chip away at my writing, and I still have the standard of living of a grad student.

 As an Arab American do you feel a special responsibility to inform the world about your native country?

I never write with an objective in mind, or with the agenda of representing a country or people. Rather, I trust my nose, following story lines in my head that grip me. That said, Lebanon will always be a context that fascinates me, so I suspect I’ll naturally return to this place as a frame for many books to come.

 How much of Lifted By The Great Nothing is autobiographical?

Virtually none of it. There are fragments here and there, but for the most part it’s such a Frankenstein of my experiences that it’s unrecognizable. That said, the emotional plot and insights feel like the truest things I’ve ever dreamed up.

 What advice would you give for aspiring novelists?

I’m constantly beating the same drum on this one. My advice is to not concentrate on the end result of a project (i.e. imagining your mother’s proud face at your first reading, or what you’ll do with your newly discovered prestige and book advance), but instead, put your life force into the day-to-day, the process, the work itself–– because that’s what keeps us writers going.

Rusted Radishes Exhibition at Tawlet, Saturday June 27!

We hope you can join us this Saturday, June 27, between 10-12 at Tawlet in Mar Michayel for a wonderful meeting of the RR community. Tawlet — a restaurant whose kitchen is run by women from all corners of Lebanon who can make you a kibbe nayyeh with their eyes closed — have offered their space to Rusted Radishes for the next two months to exhibit the wonderful work that Rusted Radishes artists and writers have contributed. We have all three issues on hand as well as a wall of etchings to show – and sell – to help raise money for our upcoming issue. And of course there’s breakfast. Tawlet offers a wonderful brunch starting at noon, so if you want to stay on and try out more of its home-cooking, you may make a reservation. In any case, what we really want is for you to come, meet the staff, hang out, and have a good time with a group of artists, writers, friends, and the AUB community.

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