Where the Bird Disappeared

2019 winner
Where the Bird Disappeared
Publisher: Seagull Books
Published Date: May 2018
ISBN-13: 978-0857425423

This lyrical novel, set in the surroundings of the Palestinian village of Zakariyya, weaves a narrative rich in sensory detail yet troubled by the porousness of memory. It tells the story of the relationship between two figures of deep mythical resonance in the region, Yahya and Zakariyya, figures who live in the present but bear the names—and many traits—of two saints. Ranging from today into back to pre-1948 Palestine, the book presents both a compelling portrait of a contemporary village and a sacred geography that lies beyond and beneath the present state of the world. Sensual, rich in allusion, yet at the same time focused on the struggles of today, Where the Bird Disappeared is a powerful novel of both connection and dispossession.

Winner of the Translation Award at Palestine Book Awards 2019.

Review(s):

Reviewed by: Nasim Ahmed

One would be at stretch to find another place on earth where the mining of history evokes as much controversy as Palestine. You would struggle even further to name a political movement more successful than Zionism in its ability to excavate history and string together a political narrative connecting three thousand years of history to defend...

Author(s):

Past Winners

  • The Parisan
  • Justice for Some: Law and the Question of Palestine
  • Stone Men: The Palestinians who built Israel
  • Nabil Anani: Palestine, Land and People
  • Where the Bird Disappeared
  • In the Land of My Birth: A Palestinian Boyhood
  • Balfour in the Dock: J.M.N. Jeffries & the Case for the Prosecution
  • Brothers Apart: Palestinian citizens of Israel and the Arab world
  • The Great War and the Remaking of Palestine
  • On the Arab-Jew, Palestine, and other displacements
  • Gaza under Hamas: From Islamic Democracy to Islamist Governance
  • The Commander: Fawzi Al-Qawuqji and the fight for Arab Independence 1914-1948
  • Drawing the Kafr Qasem Massacre
  • The Biggest Prison on Earth: A History of the Occupied Territories
  • Palestinians in Syria: Nakba Memories of Shattered Communities
  • I Remember My Name
  • Being Palestinian: Personal Reflections on Palestinian Identity in the Diaspora
  • Imperial Perceptions: British influence and power in late Ottoman times
  • Gaza: A History
  • Jerusalem Interrupted: Modernity and Colonial Transformation