Reading: Miral by Rula Jebreal

Mon, December 13, 2010 7:00 pm at Alwan for the Arts

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Followed by a Discussion with the Author and Director Julian Schnabel Moderated by Shirin Neshat

Free and Open to the Public

Miral is a novel that focuses on remarkable women whose lives unfold in the turbulent political climate along the borders of Israel and Palestine. The story begins with Hind, a woman who sacrifices everything to establish a school for refugee Palestinian girls in East Jerusalem. Years later Miral arrives at the school after her mother commits suicide. Hind sees that Miral has the potential to change the world peacefully-but Miral is appalled by the injustice that surrounds her, and flirts with the notion of armed resistance. Hind desperately works to persuade her to stay the course of education, hard work, and non-violent resolution-but is she too late?

Miral, the novel, has been made into a major motion pictured directed by Julian Schnabel (The Diving Bell and the Butterfly) and starring Freida Pinto (Slumdog Millionaire). The cast also includes Hiam Abbass as Hind, Willem Defoe, and Vanessa Redgrave. It premiered in September at the Venice Film Festival and will be released in the US in the spring of 2011. Publication rights have been sold in 13 countries.

About the Author

Rula Jebreal
was born in Haifa in 1973, and spent her early years living in East Jerusalem with her family. After her mother's death she entered the Dar El-Tifel orphanage and school at age five. She remained there until she received her diploma in 1991.After receiving a scholarship from the Italian government, Jebreal left East Jerusalem to study medicine at the University of Bologna. While there she obtained a degree in physiotherapy and then decided to go back to school to study journalism. She began working for Italian newspapers specializing in the Arab-Israeli conflict and the growth of Islamic fundamentalism.

In 2000, Jebreal became the first foreign anchorwoman in Italy to broadcast the evening news on national television. Since 2004, Jebreal has hosted numerous high profile Italian television programs including: Omnibus, her daily talk show during which she interviewed Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, Palestinian Authority President Abu Mazen, and Nobel prize-winner Mohammad El Baradei, among others. Jebreal was recognized by Media Watch in 2004 for her coverage of the Iraq war. She is the author of The Bride from Assuan, which was awarded the International Fenice Europe Prize, and Divieto di Soggiorno, a study of the history of immigration in Europe.

Read an interview with the author on our blog

Director Julian Schnabel began his career as a visual artist. After earning a BFA from the University of Houston, he garnered international critical acclaim for his "plate paintings" – large-scale paintings set on broken ceramic plates. His work is included in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, the Museum of Contemporary Art and the Centre Georges Pompidou. Schnabel directed the films Basquiat (1996), for which he also wrote the screenplay, Before Night Falls (2000), The Diving Bell and the Butterfly (2007), Lou Reed's Berlin (2008) and Miral (2010). The Diving Bell and the Butterfly won awards for Best Director from the Cannes Film Festival, the Golden Globe Awards and the Independent Spirit Awards. It also earned four Academy Award nominations, including Best Director. Miral, his latest film, will open nationwide in March of 2011

Moderator Shirin Neshat is an Iranian-born visual artist and filmmaker whose innovative approach of fusing photography, calligraphy, video and film has brought her international acclaim among audiences and critics alike. She has screened her work at film festivals around the world and has exhibited in major European and North American cities. She has won numerous awards, including the Infinity Award of ICP in New York, the Grand Prix of the Kwangju Biennial in Korea, and the Golden Lion at the 48th Venice Biennial.

Last updated: 2010-12-12 00:46:13

Rula Jebreal
Rula Jebreal
Julian Schnabel
Julian Schnabel
Shirin Neshat
Shirin Neshat

Alwan for the Arts

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(between Broad St. and Broadway)
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(646) 732-3261

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