Jordan Elgrably

JORDAN ELGRABLY (Editor in Chief and Art Director) is a Franco-American journalist, editor and fiction writer of Moroccan heritage, whose work has appeared widely in the U.S. and Europe and in a number of anthologies and journals, such as the Paris Review, Salmagundi and Apulée. He is the cofounder and former director of the Levantine Cultural Center/The Markaz (2001–2020). His work in the cultural vanguard has won the support of many foundations and grants, including the Open Society Foundation, Mellon Foundation, the Ariane de Rothschild Foundation, HFPA Foundation, American Express and others. Follow Jordan on Twitter.

Rana Asfour

RANA ASFOUR (Managing Editor) has lived, worked and been educated in Jordan, Lebanon, Abu Dhabi and the UK. A writer and book reviewer, her work has appeared in such publications as The Guardian UK and The National/UAE. In addition to her writing experience, Rana has worked in radio and TV in Amman, and has been a translator from Arabic and French to English. Rana tweets at @bookfabulous.

Rayyan al-Shawaf

RAYYAN AL-SHAWAF (Deputy Editor) is a book critic and editor based in Malta. His reviews and essays have appeared in theBoston Globe, Christian Science Monitor, Globe and Mail, Miami Herald, PopMatters, San Francisco Chronicle, Toronto Star, The Markaz Review, Truthdig, Washin​gton Post and elsewhere. His debut novel, When All Else Fails, was published by Interlink Books.

Malu Halasa

MALU HALASA (Literary Editor) is a London-based writer and editor. Her six co-edited anthologies include—Syria Speaks: Art and Culture from the Frontline, with Zaher Omareen; The Secret Life of Syrian Lingerie: Intimacy and Design, with Rana Salam; and the short series: Transit Beirut: New Writing and Images, with Rosanne Khalaf, and Transit Tehran: Young Iran and Its Inspirations, with Maziar Bahari. She was managing editor of the Prince Claus Fund Library; a founding editor of Tank Magazine and Editor at Large for Portal 9. As a freelance journalist in London, she has covered wide-ranging subjects, from water as occupation in Israel/Palestine to Syrian comics during the present-day conflict. Her books, exhibitions and lectures chart a changing Middle East. Her latest anthology is Syria Speaks: Art and Culture From the Frontline (coedited with Zaher Omareen 7 Nawara Mahfoud). Malu Halasa’s debut novel, Mother of All Pigs was reviewed by the New York Times as “a microcosmic portrait of … a patriarchal order in slow-motion decline.” She tweets at @halasamalu.

MOHAMMAD RABIE (Arabic Editor) is a writer and editor, born in Cairo in 1978. He has published four novels in Arabic, Kawkab AnbarYear of the DragonOtared and History of the Gods of Egypt. Otared appears in an English translation by Robin Moger, which was nominated for the International Prize for Arabic Fiction in 2016. Rabie served as an editor in Altanweer publishing house, Cairo (2013-2018) and Alkarma publishers, Cairo (2018-2020). Presently he manages the Khan Aljanub Arabic bookstore in Berlin, which he cofounded in 2020.

Sholeh Wolpé

SHOLEH WOLPÉ—(Poetry Editor) was born in Iran and lived in Trinidad and the UK before settling in the US. She is a poet, playwright and librettist. Her most recent book, Abacus of Loss: A Memoir in Verse (March 2022) is hailed by Ilya Kaminsky as a book “that created its own genre—a thrill of lyric combined with the narrative spell.” Her literary work includes a dozen books, several plays, an oratorio/opera, and several  multi-genre performance pieces. Her translations of Attar and Forugh Farrokhzad have garnered awards and established Sholeh Wolpé as a celebrated re-creator of Persian poetry into English. Recently she was the subject of a Metropolitan Museum of Art Spotlight, The Long Journey Home. Presently a writer-in-residence at UCI, she divides her time between Los Angeles and Barcelona. For more information about her work visit her website. You’ll also find her on Facebook, YouTube and Instagram.

Megan Jarrell

MEGAN JARRELL (Social Media Manager) is an American graduate in Global Communications from the American University of Paris. She is also an editor at AUP’s student-led publication, The Peacock, and has recently written and published several critical research articles for Emerj Artificial Intelligence on a variety of topics.

Editorial Board/Contributing Editors

Jenine Abboushi

JENINE ABBOUSHI is Senior Writer with The Markaz Review, and a contributing editor. A Palestinian-American writer, freelancer and traveler, especially around home, she lived for many years in the United States, Palestine, Morocco and Lebanon, and now makes her home in Marseille. She earned a a B.A. from Birzeit University in Palestine, Masters in English and Comparative Literature from Columbia and a PhD from Harvard in Comparative Literature. Jenine is at work on a second novel that will be part of a trilogy. Follow her on Twitter, @jenineabboushi.

Salar Abdoh

SALAR ABDOH is an Iranian novelist and essayist who divides much of his time between New York and Tehran. He is the author of the novels Poet Game (2000), Opium (2004), Tehran At Twilight (2014), and Out of Mesopotamia (2020) and the editor and translator of the anthology Tehran Noir (2014). He also teaches in the graduate program in Creative Writing at the City College of New York at the City University of New York. Abdoh seeks to help Iran re-engage with the Arab world and convey more of Iranian culture to the west. Salar Abdoh at Goodreads.

Ammiel Alcalay

AMMIEL ALCALAY–Poet, novelist, translator, scholar and activist Ammiel Alcalay was born and raised in Boston. He studied Latin and ancient Greek at City College in New York and earned his PhD in comparative literature from the CUNY Graduate Center. His parents were Sephardic Jews from Belgrade (Serbia), and much of Alcalay’s work engages questions of religious identity, language, and culture, particularly the histories and cultures of the Balkans and the Middle East. He is the author of the classic study After Jews and Arabs: Remaking Levantine Culture; Keys to the Garden; Memories of Our Future: Selected Essays and the cairo notebooks [sic] among other works. Alcalay founded and is general editor of Lost & Found: The CUNY Poetics Document Initiative. The chapbook series publishes student and guest-edited archival texts of writers and activists, frequently focusing on correspondence, journals, lectures, and ephemera. Alcalay won the American Book Award for his work on Lost & Found in 2017.

Iason Athanasiadis

TMR contributing editor IASON ATHANASIADIS is a Mediterranean-focused multimedia journalist based between Athens, Istanbul, and Tunis. He uses all media to recount the story of how we can adapt to the era of climate change, mass migration, and the misapplication of distorted modernities. He studied Arabic and Modern Middle Eastern Studies at Oxford, Persian and Contemporary Iranian Studies in Tehran, and was a Nieman fellow at Harvard, before working for the United Nations between 2011 and 2018. He received the Anna Lindh Foundation’s Mediterranean Journalism Award for his coverage of the Arab Spring in 2011, and its 10th-anniversary alumni award for his commitment to using all media to tell stories of intercultural dialogue in 2017. Find him on Twitter @Iason11.

Kai Bird

KAI BIRD–is a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian and journalist. In January 2017 he was appointed Executive Director and Distinguished Lecturer of CUNY Graduate Center’s Leon Levy Center for Biography. His most recent book, The Good Spy: The Life and Death of Robert Ames, was a New York Times best-seller. He chronicled his childhood in the Middle East in his memoir, Crossing Mandelbaum Gate: Coming of Age Between the Arabs and Israelis–which was a Finalist for both the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize. He is the acclaimed author of biographies of John J. McCloy, McGeorge Bundy, and William Bundy. He won the Pulitzer Prize for biography in 2006 for American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer (co-authored with Martin J. Sherwin). His work includes critical writings on the Vietnam War, Hiroshima, nuclear weapons, the Cold War, the Arab-Israeli conflict and the CIA. Bird and Sherwin also won the National Books Critics Circle Award and the Duff Cooper Prize for History. In September 2016 he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by Carleton College. He is an elected member of the prestigious Society of American Historians. Kai Bird lives in New York City and Florida with his wife Susan Goldmark. His new book, due out in the summer of 2021, is The Outlier: The Unfinished Presidency of Jimmy Carter. @Kaibird123

Aomar Boum

AOMAR BOUM is a cultural anthropologist and Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of California Los Angeles, where he is Vice Chair of Undergraduate Studies. He is the author of Memories of Absence: How Muslims Remember Jews in Morocco, and with Thomas K. Park the coauthor of the Historical Dictionary of Morocco. He is also the coauthor of The Holocaust and North Africa as well as A Concise History of the Middle East (2018) and most recently, with Mohamed Daadaoui, the coauthor of the Historical Dictionary of the Arab Uprisings (2020). Aomar is an aficionado of the graphic novel and will guest-edit a special edition of TMR on the graphic novel this summer. He was born and raised in the oasis of Mhamid, Foum Zguid in the Province of Tata, Morocco.

Melissa Chemam

MELISSA CHEMAM– A native of Paris with roots in Algeria, Melissa is a widely-published journalist and radio reporter (BBC, RFI) and author of a book on Bristol’s music scene, Massive Attack: Out of the Comfort Zone. She is a writer in residence in the UK at Bristol’s Arnolfini gallery who writes on music, art, politics and film. As a film researcher she has worked with Raoul Peck on his James Baldwin documentary I Am Not Your Negro and his forthcoming film on Frantz Fanon. She has been based in Prague, Miami, London, Nairobi (covering Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia, Somalia), and Bristol, UK. She’s travelled from Italy to Haiti, via Tunisia, Liberia, South Africa, India, Mexico, Niger, Turkey and Iraq. Her Twitter handle is @melissachemam.


A Black and Amazigh Indigenous scholar from Morocco, Brahim El Guabli is an Assistant Professor of Arabic Studies and Comparative Literature at Williams College. His forthcoming book is entitled Moroccan Other-Archives: History and Citizenship after State Violence. He’s at work on a second book project entitled Saharan Imaginations: Between Saharanism and Ecocare. His journal articles have appeared in PMLA, Interventions, the Cambridge Journal of Postcolonial Literary Inquiry, Arab Studies Journal, META, and the Journal of North African Studies, among others. He is co-editor of the two forthcoming volumes of Lamalif: A Critical Anthology of Societal Debates in Morocco During the “Years of Lead” (1966-1988) (Liverpool University Press) and Refiguring Loss: Jews in Maghrebi and Middle Eastern Cultural Production (Pennsylvania State University Press). He is a TMR Contributing Editor.

Mischa Geracoulis

MISCHA GERACOULIS is a US-based journalist with roots in the Mediterranean. Her diverse writings and teaching philosophy, advocacy efforts, and approach to life are informed by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, journalistic oath of ethics, and critical media literacy. Some of Mischa’s research topics include the Armenian Genocide, global refugee crises, rights to adequate housing and equitable education, and the multifaceted human condition. Her work has appeared in Middle East Eye, Truthout, LA Review of Books, The Guardian, Colorlines, Gomidas Institute, openDemocracy, and National Catholic Reporter among others. Mischa tweets @MGeracoulis.

Francisco Letelier

FRANCISCO LETELIER– Based in Venice, California, Franciso Letelier is a Chilean American artist, muralist, activist and writer who bridges continents, weaving history and contemporary experiences, creating powerful and memorable work. For four decades, Letelier has created art that crosses disciplines and cultures while building connections between nations and individuals. He has been involved in projects throughout the Americas, Europe and the West Bank. Known also for his lectures, spoken word and writing, Letelier has been published in the Los Angeles Times, New York Times, Washington Post and other publications. He has received the LA Artcore award for contributions to Southern California culture and the SPARC (Social and Public Art Resource Center) Siquieros Muralist Award. Find him on Twitter at @franlete.

Anne-Marie O'Connor

ANNE-MARIE O’CONNOR—is the author of The Lady in Gold: The Extraordinary Tale of Gustav Klimt’s Masterpiece, Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer, the bestselling story of the battle by Vienna emigre Maria Altmann to reclaim five Gustav Klimt paintings from her native Austria in an eight-year legal battle, a saga that also inspired the movie Woman in Gold, in which Helen Mirren played Maria Altmann. A former Jerusalem correspondent, Anne-Marie is a longtime journalist in Latin America, and covered the civil wars in Nicaragua and El Salvador as a Central America bureau chief for Reuters. She was also a staff writer for the Los Angeles Times, the Miami Herald, UPI, and the Cox Newspaper chain, and has written for Esquire, the Christian Science Monitor, and The Nation. She is a speaker on the subject of the Nazi plunder of art and restitution. Her twitter handle is @theladyingold.

Viola Shafik

VIOLA SHAFIK — is a filmmaker, curator and film scholar. She is the author of Arab Cinema: History and Cultural Identity (AUC Press 1998/2016), Popular Egyptian Cinema: Gender, Class and Nation (AUC Press 2007), Resistance, Dissidence, Revolution: Documentary Film Aesthetics in the Middle East and North Africa (forthcoming from Routledge, 2023) and the editor of Documentary Filmmaking in the Middle East and North Africa (AUC Press 2022). She has taught at the American University in Cairo, Zurich University, Humboldt University and Ludwig Maximilian, Munich where she held the position of a researcher 2016-2020.  She served as the Head of Studies of the Documentary Campus MENA, curator and consultant for numerous international film festivals and film funds, such as La Biennale di Venezia, the Berlinale, Dubai Film Market, Rawi Screen Writers Lab, Torino Film Lab and the World Cinema Fund. She directed several documentaries, among others The Lemon Tree/Shajarat al-laymun (1993), Planting of Girls/Mawsim zaraa al-banat (1999), Jannat `Ali-Ali im Paradies/My Name is not Ali (2011) and Arij – Scent of Revolution (2014)Current works in progress are Home Movie on Location and Der Gott in Stücken. Viola Shafik is the guest editor of TMR’s BERLIN issue.

Ella Shohat

ELLA SHOHAT—is Professor of Cultural Studies at NYU. Her books include Taboo Memories, Diasporic Voices; Israeli Cinema: East/West and the Politics of Representation; Talking Visions: Multicultural Feminism in a Transnational Age; Dangerous Liaisons: Gender, Nation and Postcolonial Perspectives; Between the Middle East and the Americas: The Cultural Politics of Diaspora; and with Robert Stam, Unthinking Eurocentrism; Multiculturalism, Postcoloniality and Transnational Media; Flagging Patriotism: Crises of Narcissism and Anti-Americanism; and Race in Translation: Culture Wars Around the Postcolonial Atlantic. She co-edited a number of special issues for the journal Social Text, including “Edward Said: A Memorial Issue,” “Palestine in a Transnational Context,” and “911-A Public Emergency?” while her writing has been translated into over 10 languages. Shohat has also served on the editorial board of several journals, including: Social Text; Middle East Critique; Meridians; Interventions; and Middle East Journal of Culture and Communication. She is a recipient of such fellowships as Rockefeller and the Society for the Humanities at Cornell University, where she also taught at The School of Criticism and Theory; together with Sinan Antoon, she was awarded the NYU Humanities Initiative fellowship for their “Narrating Iraq: Between Nation and Diaspora;” and Shohat was awarded a Fulbright research / lectureship at the University of São Paulo, Brazil, for studying the cultural intersections between the Middle East and Latin America. She is author most recently of On the Arab-Jew, Palestine and Other Displacements & Between the Middle East and the Americas: The Cultural Politics of Diaspora. Ella Shohat is from a Jewish-Baghdadi family, grew up in Israel and has lived most of her life in New York.

Amy Wilentz

AMY WILENTZ—Amy Wilentz is the author of Farewell Fred Voodoo: A Letter From Haiti, The Rainy Season: Haiti Since Duvalier, the novel Martyrs’ Crossing, and I Feel Earthquakes More Often Than They Happen: Coming to California in the Age of Schwarzenegger. She is the winner of the Whiting Writers Award, the PEN Martha Albrand Non-Fiction Award, and the American Academy of Arts and Letters Rosenthal Award. In 1990 she was shortlisted for the National Book Critics Circle Award for nonfiction for The Rainy Season. She won the 2013 National Book Critics Circle Award for memoir for Farewell, Fred Voodoo, and was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in general nonfiction in 2020. Wilentz is MacDowell fellow, the former Jerusalem correspondent for The New Yorker and a long-time contributing editor at The Nation. She has written for The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, Politico, The London Review of Books, the Los Angeles Review of Books, and many other publications. She teaches in the Literary Journalism program at the University of California at Irvine, and lives in Los Angeles. She tweets @amywilentz.