Ahdaf Soueif is the author of the bestselling The Map of Love (shortlisted for the Booker Prize in 1999 and translated into more than 20 languages). As well as the well-loved In the Eye of the Sun and the collection of short stories, I Think of You. Ms Soueif is also a political and cultural commentator. The London Review of Books has called her "a political analyst and commentator of the best kind" and her clear-eyed reporting and analysis is syndicated throughout the world. A collection of her essays, Mezzaterra: Fragments from the Common Ground, was published in 2004. Her translation (from Arabic into English) of Mourid Barghouti's I Saw Ramallahalso came out in 2004.
Writing in English and Arabic, concerned with both the art of fiction and the state of the world, she works at several crossroads. She has been awarded 3 honorary DLitts by British universities – having earned her PhD in Linguistics from the University of Lancaster in 1979. She is a Fellow of the Royal Society for Literature, a fellow of the Lannan Foundation for Cultural Freedom and the first recipient of the Mahmoud Darwish Award (2010). In 2007 Ms Soueif founded Engaged Events, a UK based charity. Its first project is the Palestine Festival of Literature which takes place in Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Ramallah, Nablus, Jenin and al-Khalil/Hebron. See http://www.palfest.org/