Elliott Colla


Elliott Colla is author of Baghdad Central (London: Bitter Lemon Press, 2014). He teaches Arabic literature at Georgetown University.

Articles by this Author
Marsha Pripstein Posusney

MERIP mourns the passing of Marsha Pripstein Posusney (1953-2008), a stalwart member of the editorial committee of Middle East Report from 1989-1994, a MERIP program committee member from 1996-2001 and our friend. An experienced teacher, Marsha...

Solidarity in the Time of Anti-Normalization

The 1979 Camp David peace treaty may have brought an end to formal hostilities between Egypt and Israel, but their peace is a cold one. Moreover, there has always been a wide gap between how this treaty shapes Egyptian foreign policy and popular...

From the Editors

The hijackings and mass murders of September 11 were horrible and momentous, but the world did not suddenly change on that crystal-clear morning. Existing cracks in the US-led world order widened and deepened, and lurking insecurities strode...

Le lute de Bagdad

Given the rich lyricism and pointed social quality of contemporary Arabic poetry, it's no accident that politically motivated Arab music is usually vocal rather than instrumental. The close collaborations between Marcel Khalife and Mahmoud...

Occupational Hazards

Reluctantly, some American officials recently began to use a new word when talking about our presence in Iraq: occupation. Even though the Bush administration worked hard to keep this word out of our national vocabulary before and during the war...

A New World Order, A New Marcel Khalife

"Silencing Is at the Heart of My Case"

When a group of Islamist lawyers filed a suit this summer to divorce a Cairo professor from his wife, against the couple’s wishes and without their knowledge, on the grounds that he was an apostate, the story got attention even in the...

Never Too Soon to Say Goodbye to Hi

Despite its deepening troubles in Iraq, the Bush administration maintains an audaciously upbeat outward mien. From George W. Bush’s macho landing on an aircraft carrier in May to Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld’s victory lap around...

The People Want

Many of the slogans of the Egyptian revolution have been poetry, and as compositions with rhyme, meter and purpose, they resonate with very old conceptions of lyrical form. But slogans are not literary texts whose meanings can be reduced to a...

Looking for the Three of Diamonds

A few years ago, I began work on a crime novel set in Iraq. I borrowed the name of a real-life person, Muhsin Khadr al-Khafaji, as...