Dr. Tahera Qutbuddin becomes first Indian to win Sheikh Zayed Book Award


Dr. Tahera Qutbuddin has become the first person from India to win the prestigious Sheikh Zayed Book Award.  The Mumbai-born professor won the honour for her book ‘Arabic Oration: Art and Function’, which was published by Brill Academic Publishers of Leiden in 2019. 

Dr. Tahera is a US citizen, who was born into the prominent Qutbuddin family in India and grew up in south Mumbai. She will be presented with the award later this month at Abu Dhabi.

She has been named the winner of the 15th Sheikh Zayed Book Award.

About Dr. Tahera Qutbuddin

•Dr. Tahera Qutbuddin is a professor of Arabic Literature at the Department of NELC in the University of Chicago.

•She had completed her early education in Fort Convent, Presentation Convent in Kodaikanal, Villa Theresa High School and Sophia College in Mumbai.

•The professor also serves on the editorial board of Abu Dhabi’s Library of Arabic Literature. 

•Her research focuses on intersections of the literary, the religious, and the political in classical Arabic poetry and prose. 

About Sheikh Zayed Book Award

•The Abu Dhabi Department of Cultural annually honours people with exemplary work in the field of Arabic literature with the Sheikh Zayed Book Award.

•Sheikh Zayed Book Award is popularly known as the Arabic world’s Nobel Prize.

•The award aims at showcasing the most powerful, stimulating and challenging works representing the Arab world.

•The award is presented to “Arab writers, intellectuals, publishers and young talent whose writings and translations of humanities have scholarly and objectively enriched Arab cultural, literary and social life.

•The award was set up in the memory of Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the principal architect of the United Arab Emirates. Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan was the authoritarian ruler of Abu Dhabi and President of the UAE for over 30 years from 1971-2004. 

•The award was first awarded in 2007. It is one of the richest literary awards in the world, as it carries a cash prize worth DH 7,000,000.

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