The Throne

  The Throne Yousif M. Qasmiyeh, University of Oxford and Refugee Hosts Writer in Residence No one has ever seen the bereaved mother. They arrived at night bearing nothing but their cries. The father, the son, the wheelchair... In the picture, the order is merely an aesthetic thing. Or more precisely an echo of the…

Translation workshop on contemporary Arabic poetry produced by Palestinian, Iraqi and Syrian refugees.

On Monday, 4th February, Refugee Hosts' writer-in-residence, Yousif M. Qasmiyeh, will facilitate a translation workshop focusing on contemporary Arabic poetry produced by Palestinian, Iraqi and Syrian refugees as part of the Refugee Hosts' creative writing workshops convened by Prof. Lyndsey Stonebridge and Yousif in Lebanon (Baddawi Camp and Hamra) and Jordan (Jerash and Al-Zarqa) in 2018. Held as part of the Oxford Comparative Criticism Translation (OCCT) Discussion Group…

“To embroider the voice with its own needle”

Marking the launch of the inaugural issue of the Migration and Society journal, in this piece Yousif M. Qasmiyeh (Refugee Hosts' Writer in Residence and Creative Encounters Editor of the new journal) sets out one of the aims of the journals' Creative Encounters section; to problematise the notion of voice. The piece also presents five poems…

Necessarily, the Camp is the Border

Necessarily, the Camp is the Border Yousif M. Qasmiyeh, University of Oxford and Refugee Hosts Writer in Residence There, the noise is also the religious… On a day as chilly as the pulses of those who took away our things and left the door ajar, you gave birth to me in darkness: you, the midwife,…

Flesh when mutilated called God

Flesh when mutilated called God By Yousif M. Qasmiyeh, University of Oxford and Refugee Hosts Writer in Residence Time is God’s journey to his shadow. An incomplete sentence is the place. In the non-occurrence of birth, aborting the camp becomes the only possibility. Might the dialects be the place that will be? The hole is…

The Hands are Hers

The Hands are Hers Yousif M. Qasmiyeh - University of Oxford The hands are hers – fractured urns of intimacy and anticipation. They would cut, mend, darn, comb, bathe, clean, feel and above all submit themselves as seals of presence at the UNRWA distribution centres. In this photograph, the face is outside the frame but…

In mourning the refugee, we mourn God’s intention in the absolute

In mourning the refugee, we mourn God’s intention in the absolute Yousif M. Qasmiyeh, University of Oxford  How can there be a world apropos a camp? How can there be a camp apropos a world? We repeat the repeated so we can see our features more clearly, the face as it is, the cracks in…

Oxford Translation Day: ‘Translating the Name’ workshop with Yousif M. Qasmiyeh

This Saturday 09 June 2018 10:30-11:45, Refugee Hosts Writer in Residence Yousif M. Qasmiyeh and Prof. Matthew Reynolds (University of Oxford) will lead a workshop on translation, poetry and Arabic. In addition to drawing on Yousif’s work created as part of the Refugee Hosts project, it will involve a close analysis of poems and drafts…

To the Plants is Her Face

To the Plants is Her Face Yousif M. Qasmiyeh and Elena Fiddian-Qasmiyeh (Refugee Hosts) The plants which appear in this picture hinge partly on a short wall and partly on a used wooden chest of drawers primarily staged to encircle the entrance to the house and protect it from the curious eyes of passers-by. Or…

The Wall 

The Wall  Yousif M. Qasmiyeh (University of Oxford) and Elena Fiddian-Qasmiyeh (Refugee Hosts, UCL)  According to my father, this is the original wall of our old house which was erected in Baddawi camp in the mid-50s. The wall is now an additional barrier between our neighbours and us. A distance that has been multiply plastered…