Saudi Arabia (Jeddah) – TBR Literary Event

It’s winter and we just kickstarted our annual winter literary tour, this time starting with Jeddah, in Saudi Arabia. Our first in the Middle East. Hosted and organised by our Editorial Director, Huda Merchant, the event was divided into three main segments.

1. Panel Discussion on ‘Storytelling in today’s age: In Facts, Fiction & Poetry’ with the Editor-in-Chief of a newly launched feminist literary magazine in Saudi Arabia, Jahanamiya and a Book Reviewer and Editor from Destination Jeddah. We discussed fiction, poetry and creative non-fiction and its power in storytelling today. We spoke about the contemporary Saudi society, the stories that are being written and expressed in the region, how we shouldn’t “oppress our books” and the lack of an active literary culture in Saudi Arabia.

2. Interactive Session with Jeddah Reads. Jeddah Reads being a new initiative that promotes reading in the region held a small interactive session with the audience, where we all discussed why we read, why we should read, stereotypes and what we can do to as a community to improve our reading culture in Jeddah.

3. Poetry Slam session by 5 wonderful and distinctive poets, each that revealed a different style of poetry and an important message within.

Thank you all that came to our event, we were really overwhelmed with all the positive response and we hope to do many such events soon in the Middle East!

Photographs by Basmah Al Halees and Inas Ajaz. Special thanks to The Humming Tree Community for such a lovely space ❤

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