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James E. Montgomery

James E Montgomery (b 1962, UK) is Sir Thomas Adams’s Professor of Arabic and fellow of Trinity Hall, Cambridge. He is also an executive editor of the Library of Arabic Literature.

His many academic publications include The Vagaries of the Qaṣīdah. The Tradition and Practice of pre-Islamic Poetry (1997), which won the British-Kuwait Friendship Society prize, Al-Jāḥiẓ: In Praise of Books (2013), twice runner-up for the Sheikh Zayed Book Award (Arabic Culture in Other Languages), and Ibn Faḍlān, Mission to the Volga (2017).

His latest publication is an edition and translation (with Richard Sieburth) of ‘Antarah ibn Shaddād, War Songs (2018), and the essay-cum-translation Loss Sings (2018), listed as a Times Literary Supplement (TLS) book of the year. Loss Sings, he creates a way for us to travel – not to the seventh century itself, but to the poems from the era. By placing the poet’s work within the setting of his own grief, he makes the work newly intimate.

THE NATIONAL, M. Lynx Qualey
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