“The Racist in His Exile”, a New book by Haitham Hussein
In this autobiography, Haitham Hussein reflects on racism, alienation, integration and the struggles that permeate the paths of his life.
He deals with the issue of racism with a great deal of bravery and impartiality, exposing open wounds and venturing into personal details. Through his life’s calling of writing and with great sensitivity for the people around him, he narrates a lifelong journey of suffering in clear philosophical language grounded in reality.
As he moves from the small city of Amuda in Syria to London, and through many cities and formative stages in between, Hussein poses central questions about reality and destiny, honestly presenting his testimony on a world abandoning its brilliant and varied colours for complete darkness.
For Hussein, racism is a quagmire, and alienation is a maze not easy to dispel or wish away. However, writing can mitigate the severity of these two phenomena by raising awareness and encouraging acceptance of other people.
The reader of this autobiography cannot remain neutral, for neutrality in the face of injustice is an evasion of responsibility. Everyone is obligated to confront racism and racists wherever they are. The Racist in His Exile shows why.
This book is published in Arabic by Ramina Books, London, 2023.
About the author:
Hussein is a Kurdish-Syrian novelist born in Amuda in 1978 and now lives in London. He is a member of the Authors Society of Great Britain and a member of the Scottish PEN. He contributes to Arabic newspapers and is the founder of alriwaya.net, is the only website specializing in the contemporary Arabic fiction.
His novel “Hostages of Memory” (2009, Damascus) was translated into Czech and published in 2016. It was also adapted into a play in Czech. Translated excerpts of “Hostages of Memory” appeared in an issue of the English-language magazine Banipal devoted to Syrian literature. The English version will be publish soon by Dar Al Arab in London.
Among Hussein’s other novels, all published in Arabic, are “Aram: The Descendent of Unspoken Pains” (2006, Damascus); “Needle of Horror” (2013, Beirut and Algeria. It was translated into French, Paris 2020, by L'Armattan) and “A Weed in Paradise” (2017, Tunisia).
He has published works of literary criticism: “The Novel between Mining and Puzzling” (Aleppo, 2011); “The Novel and the Life” (2013, UAE); “The Novelist Beats the Drums of War” (2014, Dubai); “The Fictional Character” (2015, UAE); “Why should You be a Novelist” (2020, Jordan) and edited “The Story of the First Novel by 30 Arab Novelists” (2017, Dubai) He also translated plays from Kurdish “Who Kills Mammo...?" By Bashir Mulla.
Haitham Hussein’s website: