Zayed University Member Wins Prestigious Sheikh Zayed Book Award

22 Apr 2020

Zayed University Assistant professor, Dr. Mohamed Mihoub, was granted the prestigious Sheikh Zayed Book Award; one of the Arab world's most lucrative literary prizes, for his efforts in translating “Al-Insan Al-Romantiq” (L'homme Romantique) by the French Philosopher, Georges Gusdorf.

The annual award, which highlights the global imprint and influence of Arabic writing and culture, aims to recognize some of the most challenging and exciting work coming out of the Arab world and driving further cultural engagement, including both literary and scholarly works. Writers, translators, academics, and publishers from around the globe are awarded for their exceptional contributions to advancing Arabic literature and culture.

The Tunisian translator and academic was announced a winner in the translation category of the 14th edition awarding ceremony, which was held live online, today (Thursday, April 16th, 2020.) He was recognized for translating the book from French to Arabic, which was published by Dracher Sinatra, Tunisia, Institute for Translation back in 2018.

The book explores the critical tenets of Romanticism and their impact on Western thought, culture, and civilization, including physics and medical science in particular. Mihoub's translation provides a new audience with access to a seminal book in Western philosophy and the human sciences.

"The Sheikh Zayed Award is considered one of the most significant awards, not only in the Arab region but also at the international level, thanks to its highly admired impact on the world of Arab Literature, not forgetting the objectivity and neutrality of its committees, who adopt the latest and most accurate arbitration standards," he said. "Winning this Award is a great scientific and literary achievement and a huge step in the path of every researcher, translator, or writer. I was obsoletely speechless as I received the information from Dr. Ali Bin Tamim, Secretary-General of the Award."

Since his childhood, Dr. Mihoub attempted his first text translation at the age of 12, "I have always been admiring, till this date, what inspires translators to travel between two worlds, to transmit knowledge from one language to another, from a civilization to the other, the feeling to travel through time. It just amuses me, how connected I become to my roots."

He associates translation with creativity, and magnifies the act, as a parallel approach to writing from scratch. "Translating a book is not less honorable and sublime than the act of writing it," he said. "Creativity translation occurs when you possess the original text, infuse it, mix it with your bare hands, and give it an authentic image that reveals its original identity and upsurge its brilliance to a new world."