Posted on November 30, 2019

Qatar National Library celebrates national pride and heritage this month, a chance to discover books, art and other creative achievements that are a source of individual and collective pride for the country. Qatar’s writers and artists will be able to share those achievements on the global stage when the Library hosts the country’s first international literature festival, JLF Doha, with a diverse line up of events featuring prominent international writers and thinkers.

The month’s busy program of events kicks off on 5 December when the Library hosts the launch of Qatari writer Jassim Al Mohannadi's first comic book, Primeval. Al Mohannadi will discuss his experience writing the comic book, including the process of drafting the plot.

“Qatar in My Eyes,” with Ahmed Al Maadeed on 6 December, is an exciting opportunity to meet the Qatari artist behind the iconic painting “Tamim the Glorious.” He will talk about his creative journey. The lecture “Scripts from Qatar’s History” on 15 December will highlight personal letters and signatures from famous Qatari historical figures, which reflect the country’s social and economic life. The lecture will also discuss Mus'haf Al Zubara, one of the oldest examples of calligraphic writing that has been found in Qatar. “My Dream in Qatar” on 17 December will celebrate Qatar National Day by giving young members ages 12 to 18 the chance to inscribe their dreams for their future in Qatar on helium balloons that will be released together outside the Library.

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Abeer Al Kuwari, Director of Research and Learning Services at the Library, said: “Creativity is a wonderful channel to express one’s heritage and culture and the pride it instills, and Qatar National Day is a great time for us to celebrate the nation’s rich history. This December, through an exceptional program and an international literature festival, the Library presents countless opportunities for everyone to be inspired by the achievements of our Qatari writers and artists, as well as those from other countries who will join us throughout the month.” “Librarians in Qatar: Historical Effect on Information Literacy” on 26 December is a special event where our nation’s librarians can reflect on their intellectual heritage and the role of libraries on the development of information literacy in Qatar.

Several other themes are also explored throughout the month. From 1 to 2 December, UNESCO and the Library are organizing a regional conference, “Supporting Documentary Heritage Preservation in the Arab Region.” The conference aims to strengthen collaboration between memory institutions and conservation practitioners in the region and to present the findings of the Library and UNESCO survey on documentary heritage in the Arab region. The monthly Philharmonic at the Library concert series returns with Tchaikovsky’s Album for the Young (or Children's Album) on 5 December. The album consists of 24 short pieces composed in 1878; originally for the piano, they will be performed in this concert using Gennady Krutikov's string quintet arrangement.

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Dr. James Onley, the Library's Director of Historical Research and Partnerships, tells the fascinating yet mostly forgotten story of Qatar and the British Indian Empire from 1916 to 1947 in a talk on 10 December. His talk will be followed by a guided tour of the “Qatar, India & the Gulf” exhibition at the Library. Not to be missed is the country’s first international literature festival of its kind, JLF Doha, hosted by the Library from 12 to 14 December. In partnership with Teamwork Arts, producer of the iconic annual Jaipur Literature Festival, JLF Doha will recreate the magnificent spirit of this annual literary carnival in Doha, a celebration of literature and the power of dialogue.

Younger readers are never forgotten, and they can look forward to the interactive Children’s Storytelling Workshop with renowned author Musharraf Ali Farooqi on 14 December.

To find out more about the Library’s events in December 2019, please visit