x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Sheikh's House of Poetry to promote Arabic verse

A centre for researching and documenting Arabic poetry will be built with the aim of promoting the art form.

Sultan al Amimi is a specialist in Nabati poetry.
Sultan al Amimi is a specialist in Nabati poetry.

A centre for researching and documenting Arabic poetry will be built in Dubai with the aim of promoting the art form around the world, it was announced yesterday. The House of Poetry, which will be located at Al Shindagha, was established by a decree by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and will be managed by the Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum Foundation. The goal of the project will be to promote classical and contemporary Arabic verse in the region and beyond.

The House of Poetry would "facilitate the interaction between Arab poets and their peers from across the globe and further the role of poetry as an effective communications tool for augmenting intercultural dialogue", the foundation said. The house "will be a focal point for studies and research related to Arabic poetry in general, with special attention accorded to the propagation of Nabati poetry", an indigenous form of verse unique to the Gulf region, added Sheikh Majid bin Mohammed, the chairman of Dubai's Culture and Arts Authority.

The centre will host poetry-related activities, including competitions and awards, reading sessions, workshops, conferences, forums and seminars. "The House of Poetry is another milestone achievement that will complement Dubai's record of strategic initiatives, offering Arabic literature the standing it deserves," Sheikh Majid said. "The house will encourage Dubai's drive to promote quality cultural output, particularly in poetry, an integral component of the Arabic culture.

"Establishing a dedicated centre for poetic activities underlines the leadership's vision to invest in and support cultural growth on local, regional and international levels." The House of Poetry will also help the recently commissioned Dubai International Poetry Festival attract renowned poets from the region and different parts of the world. It will also provide young poets with financial support.

arichardson@thenational.ae