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The Sheikh Zayed Book Award holds seminar in Lisbon to promote Arabic Culture in Portuguese

posted on 23/12/2015: 1369 views

Marking its first collaboration with the Portuguese cultural community, The Sheikh Zayed Book Award held a seminar, jointly organised with the UAE Embassy in Lisbon, to promote the award's ‘Arabic Culture in Portuguese' category for the tenth cycle, 2015/2016.

The category is devised to honour all written works in English, French and Portuguese languages about Arabic civilisation and culture.

The UAE side at the seminar was presented by Sheikha Najla Al Qasimi, UAE Ambassador to Portugal, Dr. Ali Bin Tamim, Secretary-General of the Award, along with Sa'eed Hamdan, the award's General Manager.

In her opening speech, Sheikha Najla Al Qasimi praised the Sheikh Zayed Book Award's role in promoting Arabic Culture throughout the world, and its celebration of Portuguese creativity. Speaking on behalf of the award, Dr. Ali Bin Tamim commented, "In our pursuit of acknowledging creativity, we are here to celebrate the Portuguese valuable volume of intellectual and literary works."

Professor Antonio Dias Farinha from Lisbon University highlighted the common history that the Arabic and Islamic world shared with Portugal, noting the value of cooperating with the Sheikh Zayed book Award and its unique vision in bridging the gap between civilisations and bringing to the fore cultural dialogue across the globe.

Parallel to the seminar, Dr. Manuel Pechirra, President of Luso-Arab Institute for Cooperation, granted the Sheikh Zayed Book Award the council's plaque, and named the award's team honorary members of the council.

During the visit, the Sheikh Zayed Book Award envoy met with key figures from a number of academic and cultural entities in Portugal, including the University of Lisbon, Algarve University, the Centre of Middle Eastern Studies at Nova de Lisboa University and the Department of Arabic Studies at Evora University.

Since the establishment of the Arabic Culture in Other Languages category, the Sheikh Zayed Book Award has accepted works of exceptional orientalists in English, Russian, Italian, Chinese and German, and named mythologist Marina Warner from the UK, archaeologist Mario Liverani from Italy and historian Sugita Hideaki from Japan, as winners of the category in 2012, 2013 and 2014 respectively.

The Sheikh Zayed Book Award's first instalment was in 2007, intended to promote scholarship and creativity in Arab culture. It carries cash prises totalling Dh 7 million - with Dh 750,000 per winner in all eight categories, including the Arab Culture in non- Arabic languages category. The winners also receive a certificate of merit and a gold medal. – Emirates News Agency, WAM -


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