Thursday, April 26, 2012, 7:30 pm: Arab Israeli author Sayed Kashua with Arieh Saposnik








RSVP now

Cost: $10.00 per person. UCLA students free.

Writers Bloc co-sponsors this program with thanks to the Nazarian Center for Israel Studies at UCLA and UCLA’s Department of Comparative Literature. We invite you to participate in a wonderful cultural event featuring Arab Israeli author, satirist and television comedy writer Sayed Kashua, in conversation with UCLA Professor Arieh Saposnik.

Sayed Kashua (sometimes called “The Palestinian Seinfeld”) is sort of a phenomenon in Israel.  An Arab Israeli, Kashua was born in an Arab town in Israel, and has become an outspoken wit and social critic, through his novels, his weekly satiric column in Israeli newspaper Haaretz, and through the extremely popular and acclaimed TV sitcom he created, “Arab Labor.” His work’s overriding theme is being a member of a minority in Israel, and he covers the social, cultural and political aspects of that perspective.  It’s a crucial perspective to consider at this juncture in the current international state of affairs.  Kashua’s writing is irreverent, funny, and sobering.  His new book, Second Person Singular, has won prestigious Israeli and international literary awards, and it is an honor for Writers Bloc to bring Sayed Kashua to audiences in Los Angeles.

In conversation with Professor Arieh Saposnik, Gilbert Foundation Chair and Associate Professor of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures. Arieh’s field of study is Zionism.  He is engaging and funny, and brings a sensitivity as well as intimate understanding of Sayed Kashua’s cultural contributions-from his literature, newspaper columns and television show.

The program is made possible by the Nazarian Center for Israel Studies at UCLA in Westwood as well as UCLA’s Department of Comparitive Literature. At 147 Dodd Hall, which is just by the UCLA Law School. Park in Lot 2 (off of Hilgard at Westholme).

Tickets, $10. See below for further information about Kashua and the event from UCLA’s Nazarian Center for Israel Studies:

Sayed Kashua is an author, journalist, and TV writer.  He pens a weekly satirical column for Ha’aretz newspaper and is the creator ofof the groundbreaking Israeli sitcom, “Avodah Aravit” (Arab Labor).  He has been widely praised for his literary eye and deadpan wit. His new novel, Second Person Singular (written in Hebrew), is considered internationally to be his most accomplished and entertaining work yet.

Second Person Singular centers on an ambitious lawyer who is considered one of the best Arab criminal attorneys in Jerusalem. He has a thriving practice in the Jewish part of town, a large house, speaks perfect Hebrew, and is in love with his wife and two young children. One day at a used bookstore, he picks up a copy of Tolstoy’s The Kreutzer Sonata, and inside finds a love letter, in Arabic, in his wife’s handwriting. Consumed with suspicion and jealousy, the lawyer hunts for the book’s previous owner—a man named Yonatan—pulling at the strings that hold all their lives together.  With enormous emotional power, and a keen sense of the absurd, Kashua spins a tale of love and betrayal, honesty and artifice.

Mr. Kashua is the recipient of the Grinzane Cavour Award for first novel 2004 (Italy), The Prime Minister’s Prize 2005 (Israel), the Lessing Prize for Critic 2006 (Germany) and the Bernstein Prize 2011 (Israel) for Second Person Singular.  His two previous novels, “Dancing Arabs” (2004) and “Let it be Morning” (2006), were also written in Hebrew and published in translation in the United States.

Sayed Kashua was born inthe Arab town of Tira in central Israel.  At the age of  fifteen, he was accepted into the Israeli Academy for Arts and Sciences in Jerusalem, one of a very small number of Arab students. He then attended the Hebrew University of Jeruslaem, graduating with  degrees in philosophy and sociology.  Mr. Kashua currently resides in Jerusalem with his wife and daughter.

Mr. Kashua will sign books following his talk.  Copies of “Second Person Singular” will be available for purchase at the event.

RSVP now

Cost: $10.00 per person. UCLA students free.


Doors Open at 7:00 p.m. Parking available in UCLA Structure 2 for $11.00. Enter the campus at the the Hilgard and Westholme entrance, and purchase parking at the parking kiosk (open until 7:30 p.m. Pay-per-space parking is also available in Lot 2 for $6.00 for two hours ($11 beyond two hours).

How to Park at UCLA

For more information please contact

Nazarian Center for Israel Studies Tel: (310) 825-9646

Sponsor(s): Younes and Soraya Nazarian Center for Israel Studies, Writers Bloc, UCLA Department of Comparative Literature