Radwa Ashour was not just a writer. Like the powerful female
characters in her books, she was many people: teacher, activist,
author, mother, and translator. Through all these roles, she touched
hundreds of thousands of lives. Yet Radwa was not a populist. She
was not a chameleon author who changed with the times or with
bookselling trends. When matters were important, Radwa was singular,
determined, and immovable. Her commitment to human and humane
justice stood as a lodestar to her students, readers, and fellow activists,
and, in all these guises, she was intent on doing her job well even
within flawed systems. She reminded us to be better, to know better.
M Lynx Qualey is a critic, editor, translator, and founder of ArabLit and ArabLit Quarterly, as well as co-host of the BULAQ podcast. She won a Palestine Book Award, along with Sonia Nimr, for her translation of Sonia’s Wondrous Journeys in Strange Lands.