I Was Born There, I Was Born HereBook - 2012
The acclaimed Palestinian poet and author of I Saw Ramallah documents the introduction of his Cairo-born son, Tamim, to their Palestinian family and Tamim's subsequent incarceration in the same Cairo prison his father had occupied, in an account that explains the author's life decisions and painful experiences of exile. 20,000 first printing.
In 1996, award-winning Palestinian poet Mourid Barghouti returned to his home for the first time since his exile-first in Egypt, then in Hungary-following the Six-Day War in 1967, and wrote I Saw Ramallah, a poignant and acclaimed memoir of the exile's lot. A few years later, he returned to the Occupied Territories to introduce his Cairo-born son, Tamim, to his Palestinian family. Soon after returning to Egypt, Tamim was arrested for taking part in a demonstration against the impending Iraq War, and ironically was held not only in the same Cairo prison his father had occupied before being expelled from Egypt when Tamim was a baby, but in the very same cell. Tamim then felt the same sting of exile as he was banished from Egypt.
Explaining to his son, and to the world, the life decisions he has made, I Was Born There, I Was Born Here illuminates the path of exile across generations. Ranging freely back and forth in time between the 1990s and the present, Barghouti poignantly recalls Palestinian history and daily life while expressing the meaning of home and the importance of being able to say, standing in a small village in Palestine, "I was born here," rather than saying from exile, "I was born there." His elegant and expressive prose, beautifully rendered in Humphrey Davies' sensitive translation, is full of life and humor in the face of a culture of death. I Was Born There, I Was Born Here is destined, like its predecessor, to become a classic.
Documents the introduction of the author's son, Tamim, to their Palestinian family and Tamim's incarceration in the same Cairo prison his father had occupied, in an account that explains the author's decisions and the pain of exile.