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Manuscript 5229: First Publishing House for Sci-Fi & Fantasy in UAE

The love for Literature is common in all corners of the world. So it should come as no surprise that the Arab World is reviving this love that has been fading slowly from the population. Some literary genres including sci-fi and fantasy are even vanishing from Arabic literature. To recover such genres, the UAE has established Manuscript 5229- the first UAE sci-fi, fantasy publishing house. Now Arabic readers get to enjoy entirely different flavors of Arabic literature!

Set up in Sharjah by the Emirati novelist Noura Al Noman, “Manuscript 5229” is meant to specialize in publishing and translating novels into Arabic for young people on science fiction, history and folk myths.

The name “Manuscript 5229” refers to the 10th century journey of the Abbasid Caliph, al-Muqtadir Bellah, who sent his envoy Ahmed ibn Fadlan al-Baghdadi to the king of the Bulgarians. During the long journey, al-Baghdadi interacted with people from different cultures, so he recorded his observations in a manuscript of 420 pages, which is now present in a Turkish museum under the title MS5229.

Noura told state news agency WAM,

“Our choice of this specialization in literature is part of our desire to fill the gap suffered by the Arab library of these novels and stories, as well as to stimulate the scientific aspect in youth to inspire innovation and invention, especially that many of top scientists in the world had grown to love the science fiction.”

This new establishment is a huge step toward the transformation of the Arab world of literature. Hopefully, it will encourage Arab youth today to enter a different world away from the big screens.

We are all in need of an invitation into new worlds awaiting to be discovered, and Manuscript 5229 may just open the right door to these exciting worlds for us Arabic readers out there!

Don’t forget to share the Baraka and leave a smile 🙂 !

For our Arabic version of this article click here:مخطوط 5229… تفتح بابها للعلم و الخيال 

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Israa Elkhatib

I was born in Palestine but raised with the fireflies in Georgia. My teenage years were spent being the Muslim nerd who was known as the bookworm of the school. That followed me back to Palestine, to develop into being the girl with the big vocabulary. I spent most of my high-school days cursing Newton for not eating that apple. My English Literature Bachelor's degree was only obtained because I'm a nerd for literature and my minor in Translation pretty much pays the bills, thank you Birzeit University.Creative writing is my passion and reading is my escape from reality into a world where everything is the way you imagine it to be.

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