After Kamila Shamsie, another author says no to Israeli publication
Pakistani writer Kamila Shamsie took a stand against Israel in 2019 by claiming that she was a supporter of the BDS or Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions movement for which she was stripped of a literary award. Now Sally Rooney, the author of Normal people, joined the list after Shamsie, of writers who have taken a stand.
Rooney has refused to publish translations of his latest Hebrew work. His new novel is Beautiful people, where are you. The Irish writer turned down an Israeli publisher.
Responding to Rooney’s news, Kamila Shamsie tweeted that the move was not an accusation of the Hebrew language, but concerned a boycott of the Israeli state.
I imagine that all the writers who refused to sell translation rights in Israel to support BDS have no desire to boycott a language. Our actions honor the call of Palestinian civil society to boycott institutions linked to the Israeli state.https://t.co/iQctMgnHEj
– Kamila Shamsie (@kamilashamsie) 12 October 2021
Kamila Shamsie’s books were published in Israel but the last one was Burnt shadows which was translated into Hebrew in 2010 by Keter. But since then she has refused to accept any other. Her position was that she was happy that her work was translated into Hebrew, but not by an Israeli publisher.
Shamsie is not the only writer to take this position. British writer China Mieville who writes science fiction and fantasy also turned down a Hebrew translation.
In July there was an uproar when the glaciers Ben & jerry’s said he would not sell in Israeli settlements.