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Najwan Darwish, one of the foremost Arabic-language poets of his generation, was born in Jerusalem in 1978, exactly thirty years after his family was exiled from their home in the western part of the city. Shortly after studying in Amman, Jordan, and becoming a lawyer, Darwish decided to give up law and devote himself more fully to literature. He has worked as the editor of two cultural magazines in Palestine and was a cultural critic for the prominent Lebanese newspaper Al-Akhbar
from 2006 to 2012. Darwish has been an organizer and advisor for many public arts projects, among them the Palestine Festival of Literature. In 2009, he founded a literary press in Jerusalem, and he is currently involved in establishing a new pan-Arab newspaper, where he will be the chief editor of the arts and culture section. Darwish’s poetry is informed by Arabic and Western poetic traditions, both classical and modern, as well as by Persian Sufi poetry. Since the publication of his first collection in 2000, his poetry has been acclaimed across the Arab world and has been translated into fifteen languages. In 2009 he was on the Hay Festival Beirut’s list of the “best 39 Arab authors under the age of 39.” He currently resides in Jerusalem.