Rebecca Ruth Gould

Rebecca Ruth Gould
University of Birmingham · Department of Modern Languages

https://linktr.ee/rrgould
Working on Erasing Palestine: Free Speech and Palestinian Freedom (Verso, 2023).

About

258
Publications
76,148
Reads
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307
Citations
Citations since 2016
167 Research Items
232 Citations
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Introduction
I work at the intersections of literary, legal, and political theory. Developing and current interests include freedom of expression and comparative legal cultures. My books include Writers and Rebels (2016), which was awarded the University of Southern California Book Prize in Literary and Cultural Studies as well as a book award from the Association for Women in Slavic Studies, After Tomorrow the Days Disappear: Ghazals and Other Poems Hasan Sijzi of Delhi (2016), and The Prose of the Mountains: Tales of the Caucasus (2015). My articles have received awards ranging from the International Society for Intellectual History's Charles Schmitt Prize to the Women’s Caucus for the Modern Languages Association's Florence Howe Award for Feminist Scholarship.
Additional affiliations
September 2017 - present
University of Birmingham
Position
  • Professor
September 2015 - August 2017
University of Bristol
Position
  • Reader, Translation Studies & Comparative Literature
July 2012 - August 2015
Yale-NUS College
Position
  • Professor
Education
September 2007 - September 2013
Columbia University
Field of study
  • Middle East, South Asian, & African Studies

Publications

Publications (258)
Article
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“The Poetics from Athens to al-Andalus" received an extended summary in Russian by A.E. Makhov, “Gul’d: ‘Poetika’ ot Afin do al-Andalusa: Ibn Rushd i ego kriterii sravneniia,” National and Foreign Literature [Отечественная и зарубежная литература] 7.3 (2015): 32-35 (attached under "supplementary materials").
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This article examines the panegyric across the literary traditions of West, South, and East Asia, concentrating on Arabo-Persian qa..da, the Sanskrit pra.asti, and the Chinese fu. In radically different albeit analogous ways, these three genres elaborated a political aesthetics of literary form that corresponded to many key features of epideictic r...
Book
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* Winner, University of Southern California Book Prize in Literary and Cultural Studies * Winner, Best Book by a Woman, Association for Women in Slavic Studies * Honorable Mention, Joseph Rothschild Prize in Nationalism and Ethnic Studies, Association for the Study of Nationalities * Honorable Mention, Davis Center Book Prize, Harvard University...
Book
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The Routledge Handbook of Translation and Activism provides an accessible, diverse, and in many respects ground-breaking overview of literary, cultural, and political translation across a range of activist contexts. This volume brings together case studies and histories of oppressed and marginalised peoples from more than twenty different languages...
Book
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The Persian Prison Poem is the first study of the prison poem genre (habsiyyat) across twelfth-century Central, South, and West Asia. While documenting the emergence of a concept of poetry as a form of political resistance, the book shows the profound entanglements of poetry and power across premodern Eurasia. Indian edition forthcoming with Primus...
Book
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Erasing Palestine examines the history of radical anti-Zionist Jewish thought, beginning with the maverick intellectuals Abraham Leon (1918-1944) and Isaac Deutscher (1907-1967), whose critical relationship with Israel has been erased from public memory. Guided by Abram’s and Deutscher’s understanding of Jewish history, I examine anti-Zionist movem...
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This article explores how the Iranian poet and translator Ahmad Shamlu (1925–2000) reconceives the configuration of world poetics. Working at the intersection of global modernism and translation studies, it traces the formation of a Persian modernist poetics of solidarity on the basis of translations from so-called third-world literatures and explo...
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The increasing popularity of cryptocurrency is partly down to Iran’s volatile economy. Its currency, the rial, has been in freefall since 2011, largely due to US sanctions. But, also, the anonymity of cryptocurrency – where transactions are conducted peer-to-peer rather than being run by a central authority – makes it possible for Iran to evade the...
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ترجمة لعرض ريبيكا روث غولد لكتاب العراقي حسن النواب "قصائد لا تنام".
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ترجمة لقراءة ريبيكا غولد في مجموعة شعرية حديثة لرامي العاشق ترجمت إلى الإنكليزية. الناشر هو هارييت بوكس - مؤسسة الشعر الأمريكية
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In the summer of 2011, an adaptation of Anton Chekhov’s Ivanov (1887) debuted on the Iranian stage. The director and playwright, Amir-Reza Koohestani (b. 1978) create a production that was faithful to the classic status of this text while also maximizing its resonance with a contemporary Iranian audience. I explore how Koohestani achieved this by s...
Poster
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“Translation as Activism” Hay Festival, United Kingdom (3 June 2021) (with 20% book discount) Register at https://www.hayfestival.com/p-17897-rebecca-ruth-gould-and-kayvan-tahmasebian.aspx
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قراءة ريبيكا روث غولد لكتاب سيلكبيرغ و غياث المدهون المترجم من السويدية إلى الإنكليزية. .القراءة بالنص الإنكليزي ستنشر في موقع مؤسسة الشعر الأمريكي
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عرض مجموعة شعرية حازت على جائزة والت ويتمان. نشر العرض بالنص الإنكليزي في مؤسسة الشعر الأمريكية ضمن عمود كتب هارييت.
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This article compares three key texts in Daghestani Islamicate literature by Persian Azeri writer Bākīkhānūf (d. 1847), Lezgi polymath al-Alqadārī (d. 1910), and Qumyq (Turkic) biographer al-Durgilī (d. 1935), with a view to understanding how their authors conceptualized their role as chroniclers of times past. I draw in particular on Italian histo...
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Drawing on archival research, this article introduces several Russian poems by the Arabic mahjar poet and writer Mikhail Naimy (Mīkhāʿīl Nu’aymah) (1889-1988) for the first time to scholarship. By examining the influence of Russian literature on Naimy’s literary output, we shed light on the role of multilingualism in generating literary identities...
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Within Iran, the transformation in the Islamic legal understanding of the foreign (ajnabi) into a political concept was accelerated by the encounter with Europe during the 19th century. The classical Iranian understanding of otherness as a domain fully demarcated from the self was replaced by an internalized other, resulting in what we call here th...
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مقارنة بين 3 عروض لتشيخوف بإخراج إيراني وروسي و بريطاني
Book
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After a mysterious series of encounters with a man to whom she barely speaks, a woman hurries to leave Syria on the brink of war. She then falls in love with a stranger in Budapest, who turns out to be lying to her about the most important thing in his life. Finally, she tries to start her life over again in New York City. STRANGERS IN LOVE gathers...
Presentation
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In this clip from a marathon poetry event (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o-g4PtQCpq0), I read four of my poems which deal with resistance. The poems are included in my first poetry collection, Cityscapes (2019).
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A recently-discovered poem by Jahan Malek Khatun, with our introduction
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ترجمة لقصة ريبيكا غولد . translation of a story by Rebecca Gould with the English version
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This essay traces the conception of love and desire (ʿishq) in a Persian verse romance by the Indo-Persian poet Ḥasan Dihlavī, known as ʿIshqnāma (composed in 1301). ʿIshqnāma narrates a tragic and unconsummated love affair between a young Hindu couple. When the two protagonists immolate themselves in what is at once a reworking of the Indic custom...
Research
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Our first newsletter has been published! Sign up for future issues here: https://medium.com/global-literary-theory/licit-magic-newsletter-of-the-global-literature-theory-project-globallit-3294c0aaf015
Preprint
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Published here: https://modernismmodernity.org/articles/gould-tahmasebian-translation-alienation (open access) In the wake of modernism studies' global turn, this article considers the role of translation in fostering Iranian modernism. Focusing on the poetic translations of Bijan Elahi (1945-2010), one of Iran's most significant poet-translators,...
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New Ghazals of 14th cent. Iranian poet Jahan Malek Khatun + the first English translation of her preface to her divan (called here "Jahan Malek Khatun on Women’s Writing")
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تتعرف على الدكتورة ريبيكا روث غولد عليك أن تكون ملما بطيف واسع من الفنون الأدبية، من الحداثة وحتى العقل الكلاسيكي. تقترب غولد من الأنظمة القديمة للمعرفة بواسطة أدوات ما بعد الحداثة، وهذا ما يتسبب بمزيد من الصدام بين عدة مستويات من التطبيق العملي والأفكار. الدكتورة غولد قاصة وشاعرة وتهتم بالبحوث أيضا. هذا بالإضافة إلى اهتماماتها السياسية. وهي مؤلفة...
Article
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قراءة في قصة عن هي و هو و يمران بثلاث محطات : أبو ظبي، تبليسي، و طهران. لكل محطة موقف من الوجود و الأخلاق و العالم.
Poster
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Recording is available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GFjc-AvB5Fw Join us for a reading and discussion of modern Iranian poetry and translation with Kayvan Tahmasebian and Rebecca Ruth Gould, both scholars and practicing poets based at the University of Birmingham, who frequently collaborate on their translations of Persian poetry. They will...
Poster
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Join us to discuss our recently-released Routledge Handbook of Translation and Activism. cairoThe link for joining can be found here: https://auc-connect.aucegypt.edu/PUBLICEV/rsvp_boot?id=300044808
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Edward Said, Ilya Kaminsky, Wallace Stevens, and reflections of other poets and critics on the experience of exile.
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Responding to recent calls made within UK Parliament for a government-backed definition of Islamophobia, this article considers the unanticipated consequences of such proposals. I argue that, considered in the context of related efforts to regulate hate speech, the formulation and implementation of a government-sponsored definition will generate un...
Raw Data
This is a short story that uses the genre of the fable to explore how poems migrate across history, and to reflect on poetry as a way of challenging the power of the sultan.
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[Published simultaneously in Arabic in Qadaya Israelia 78 (Madar Centre, Ramallah); Arabic version is also uploaded here] The IHRA definition is one of the most contentious documents in the history of efforts to combat antisemitism. Although it first became well known in the UK as a result of disputes within the Labour Party, the definition reach...
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This is an overview of my article, "The Limits of Liberal Inclusivity: How Defining Islamophobia Normalises Anti-Muslim Racism" (forthcoming in the Journal of Law and Religion), written for a general audience. It can also be accessed here: https://www.middleeasteye.net/opinion/why-uk-government-should-not-be-allowed-define-islamophobia. A draft of...
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also at https://www.lrb.co.uk/blog/2020/june/bringing-colston-down
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Building on Earl Miner's insight that the lyric is a 'foundation genre' of world literature, this article examines the Russo-Persian lyric, a hybrid genre that developed within 19th and 20th century Russian literature, as a case study in lyric translatability. First developed by the Russian Romantic poet Afanasy Fet (d. 1890) and later evident in S...
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apply here: https://bham.taleo.net/careersection/external/jobdetail.ftl?job=200001VR&tz=GMT%2B01%3A00&tzname=Europe%2FLondon
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Arabic-English translator Samah Selim discusses the visibility of the translator in the literatures of the Global South, how she became a translator, and translation collectives for my three-part interview series on translation and activism for Full Stop magazine.
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This article offers the first sustained discussion in European scholarship of the work of the Ingush writer Idris Bazorkin (Идрис Базоркин). Bazorkin's Bildungsroman Dark Ages (1968) is examined as a pastoral novel that cultivates a Soviet style of postcolonial reflection on the cultural and historical memory of colonial rule. In exploring Bazorkin...
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When placed in the tradition of Gandhi and Martin Luther King Jr., civil disobedience is premised on nonviolent resistance. But Thoreau understood that, under certain conditions, the protestor’s nonviolent resistance may lead to violence by the state.
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A selection of short poems by ten Indo-Persian poets of Pre-Mughal India (Amir Khusrow, Malek Taj al-Din Dehlavi, Shahab al-Din Badayuni, Bu Ali Shah Qalandar, Shams-i Dabir, Amid al-Din Tulaki, Hakim Tartari, Qazi Hamid al-Din Naguri, Sheikh Hamid al-Din Naguri, and Qutbuddin Bakhtiar Kaki) with a letter from the editor at the end.
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This chapter examines how twentieth-century Iranian readers situated Jane Eyre within the classical genre of romance literature (adabiyāt-i ʿāshiqāna), originating from the tradition of love narratives in verse (ʿishq-nāma) pioneered by the twelfth-century Persian poet Nizami Ganjevi. While romance is only one among several of the original Jane Eyr...
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“World Literature,” The Routledge Encyclopedia of Translation Studies, Third Edition, ed. Mona Baker and Gabriela Saldanha (London: Routledge). With frontmatter and table of contents.
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Our translations represent the first time Hasan Alizadeh’s poems have been rendered into any foreign language. We have translated Alizadeh in the conviction that, when his literary output is made available in English, he will be recognized as a lyric poet comparable in stature to Guillaume Apollinaire, Arthur Rimbaud, Federico García Lorca, and Mar...
Article
Vazha Pshavela: Unveiling Vazha Pshavela: A Dozen Poems by Vazha, with Stories and Artworks Inspired by Him. Translated by Donald Rayfield, with illustrations by Manana Antelidze, Ana Kordzaia-Samadashvili, Andro Semeiko, and Leonid Semeiko. 173 pp. London: Garnett Press, 2018. ISBN 978 0 9564683 4 5. - Volume 82 Issue 3 - Rebecca Ruth Gould
Raw Data
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Photo essay comparing Delhi's Lodhi Gardens at dawn and Berlin's Skyline at dusk.
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This article engages with cosmopolitan conceptions of culture that flourished in the nineteenth century Caucasus with a view to clarifying the relevance of these legacies today. I focus in particular on the polymath writer ʿAbbās Qulī Āghā Bākīkhānūf (1794–1847). As I explore Bākīkhānūf’s historical writing, I consider how the Persianate literary t...
Book
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Traversing the urban geographies of the Middle East, South Asia, and Europe, Cityscapes offers searing and intimate portraits of Damascus, Yerevan, Hyderabad, Delhi, Isfahan, and many other cities through the lens of war, peace, love, and despair. The collection opens with poems about the cosmos, before moving to earthly topographies, and concludes...

Questions

Questions (6)
Question
I would be grateful for recommendations of secondary and primary sources that deal with hunger strikes in Palestinian, Iranian, Egyptian and Turkish prisons. Recommendations for scholarship that deals with hunger strikes in other contexts as well would also be appreciated.
Question
When was the first use of  'settler colonialism' as a term to describe a specific form of colonialization? The term does not yet have an entry in the Oxford English Dictionary.
Question
I would be grateful for recommended readings for an MA-level course I am teaching on anticolonial violence. Readings include Fanon, Benjamin, Sartre, Weber, and Qutb. I would like to include more readings from anticolonial perspectives. I am particularly interested in texts that touch on the relation between religion and violence. The course is described here: http://www.bristol.ac.uk/unit-programme-catalogue/UnitDetails.jsa;jsessionid=24F794E68AFB22C6FBAF7688D5A53E8B.nAC1004052063?ayrCode=16%2F17&unitCode=MODLM0025.
Question
I am reading Bakhtin's "Problem of Speech Genre" and his Philosophy of the Act in the hopes of gaining a better understanding of his views on genre. Can anyone recommend additional readings, whether by Bakhtin or about his thought?
Question
I would be grateful for any references to work published on the hijab and/or veiling in Islamic cultures within the past several years. This will be useful for a chapter I am writing that surveys recent scholarship on the topic.
Question
with particular emphasis on how the idea of the "obligation to migrate was understood in the nineteenth century across the Islamic world.

Network

Cited By

Projects

Projects (11)
Project
To document the range of ways in which freedom has been conceptualized and debated in Muslim societies, past and present, through the prism of language. Using language as a prism enables us to locate the many disparate understandings of freedom (the right to rebel against the state, freedom of speech, freedom of the will) within a single rubric.
Project
This project gathers together my poems published from 2014 to the present. Topics range from politics in the Middle East to the "boxes" into which we house our identities. Since ResearchGate does not have a classification for creative work, I have classified the poems as "raw data."
Project
The Routledge Handbook of Translation and Activism (http://transactivism.hcommons.org/) provides an accessible, diverse, and in many respects ground-breaking overview of literary, cultural, and political translation across a range of activist contexts. This volume brings together case studies and histories of oppressed and marginalised peoples from more than twenty different languages, ranging across Africa, Asia, the Americas, the Middle East, and Eastern Europe. Part One considers the theoretical foundations of translation and activism. Part Two examines the figure of the interpreter as an activist. Part Three examines the figure of the translator as an activist. Part Four is comprised of autobiographical reflections by translators and writers who bear witness to the stories of oppressed peoples. Part Five engages with translation and activism from a range of legal perspectives focusing on human rights. Part Six introduces a range of case studies of translations into vernacular languages. Part Seven situates translation and activism in the context of migration, with particular attention to refugee experience. Part Eight examines the role of translators in shaping revolution. As the first extended collection to introduce translation and activism from a systematically global perspective, this handbook will serve as a useful guide to translators, writers, scholars, and activists seeking to better understand the agency of language in bringing about political change.