Adonis | Ali Ahmad Said Asbar | Brief Biography


Adonis | Ali Ahmad Said Asbar | Brief Biography

Adonis  Ali Ahmad Said Asbar  Brief Biography

Adonis | Ali Ahmad Said Asbar | Brief Biography

Adonis | Ali Ahmad Said Asbar | Brief Biography

Adonis (Ali Ahmad Said Asbar) is an Arab poet, literary critic, and translator, widely considered one of the most influential and innovative thinkers in contemporary Arabic poetry. He was born on 1 January 1930 in the village of Al Qassabin in the coastal region of Latakia, Syria.

Adonis’ literary career spans over several decades, during which he has published numerous collections of poetry and critical works. He is best known for his avant-garde style, which challenges traditional Arabic poetic forms and language, and for his experimental use of themes related to sexuality, death, and cultural identity. He has been described as a visionary poet who has transformed the Arabic literary landscape with his modernist approach.

Adonis’ early works, such as “The Book of the Palace” (1957) and “A Time Between Ashes and Roses” (1959), broke away from conventional Arabic poetry and explored new themes, styles, and forms. He was part of the “Arabian School of Poetry,” which sought to revitalize the Arabic literary tradition and make it relevant to the modern world. In addition to his own writing, Adonis has translated and introduced works by European poets, including Rimbaud, Mallarm√©, and Nietzsche, into Arabic, thus introducing new concepts and styles to the Arabic literary canon.

Ali Ahmad Said Asbar‘s critical writings have also had a profound impact on contemporary Arabic literature. In works such as “The Rebellion of Arab Poetry” (1974), “The Release of the Book of Poetry” (1981), and “The Dream of the Poem” (1987), he has analyzed the evolution of Arabic poetry and advocated for its renewal through experimentation and innovation. He has also explored the intersections of literature, culture, and politics, and has written extensively on the role of art and poetry in the Arab world.

Adonis has received numerous awards and honors for his contributions to Arabic literature and culture, including the Sultan bin Ali Al Owais Cultural Award, the Neustadt International Prize for Literature, and the Lannan Foundation Prize for Cultural Freedom. He currently lives in Paris, France, and continues to write and publish new works.


Adonis: An Introduction, edited by Samah Selim (Syracuse University Press, 2010)
The Cambridge Companion to Adonis, edited by Nazih Khadduri and J.E. Peterson (Cambridge University Press, 2015)
Adonis: Selected Poems, translated by Samuel Hazo and Khaled Mattawa (University of California Press, 2004)
“Adonis: A Critical Introduction,” by Khaled Mattawa in The Oxford Handbook of Modern Arabic Literature (Oxford University Press, 2012). ***

Adonis | Ali Ahmad Said Asbar | Brief Biography

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