George Abraham (poet)

George Abraham is a Palestinian American poet. He is the author of Birthright and the specimen's apology. He is a PhD candidate in Bioengineering at Harvard University, and lives in Boston, Massachusetts.[1]

George Abraham with a copy of Birthright.

PoetryEdit

In 2018, Abraham won the Cosmonauts Avenue Poetry Prize, judged by Tommy Pico.[2] He was named "Best Poet" at the 2017 College Union Poetry Slam International.[3] He hopes to continue bringing awareness to Palestinian human rights and socio-economic struggles through art.[4]

Abraham is a board member for RAWI (Radius of Arab American Writers)[4] and a Kundiman fellow.[5]

the specimen's apologyEdit

His illustrated chapbook the specimen's apology was published in January 2019 by Sibling Rivalry Press, and illustrated by Leila Abdelrazaq.[6] In a review on The Rumpus, torrin a. greathouse said of the specimen's apology: "The works contained within the specimen’s apology are a lush and sprawling series of overlapping parallel universes in which Abraham is constantly innovating and abandoning forms. Each formal experiment is a temporary hole into a new world that opens, then collapses, behind the reader. This creates within the chapbook a shifting, fractious landscape where its author’s interdisciplinary work as a PhD in bioengineering shines through...While, in the hands of a different poet, this could all prove extremely daunting to the reader, Abraham wields these high concepts with incredible grace and trust in their audience."[7] The Michigan Quarterly Review said, "In some ways, to be Palestinian is to inhabit this bracketed body deemed imaginary and to queer it through language, imagination, and memory. In The Specimen’s Apology, George Abraham does not attempt to erase the erasures but rather to inhabit the intimacy of worlds that are, in their mistranslation, profoundly familiar."[8]

BirthrightEdit

His full-length collection Birthright was published in April 2020 from Button Poetry.[9] Sa’ed Atshan, author of Queer Palestine and the Empire of Critique, said: "Birthright captures how politics penetrates our psyche and consciousness, but as the poems triumph through anguish, we are able to hold onto life. The journey of reading these words is also a universal one, bringing together conceptions of faith, love, family, settler-colonialism, violence, queerness, and the search for home."[9]

ScienceEdit

Abraham is a Bioengineering PhD candidate at Harvard University in the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. He's said, "Both poetry and science, at their essence, try to give a language to that which we don’t understand. They do it in different ways, but that core process of looking at something, observing the world or observing a phenomenon, and assigning meaning to it is the process I am interested in." Abraham's project at Harvard looks to provide insights into how predictions can affect the brain’s process for learning motor tasks.[10]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Poets, Academy of American. "About George Abraham | Academy of American Poets". poets.org. Retrieved 2020-05-17.
  2. ^ "Prizes". Cosmonauts Avenue. Retrieved 2020-05-17.
  3. ^ "Swarthmore's OASiS Shines at Slam Poetry Tournament". www.swarthmore.edu. 2017-05-04. Retrieved 2020-05-17.
  4. ^ a b "George Abraham Poetry". gabrahampoet. Retrieved 2020-05-17.
  5. ^ "Fellows". Kundiman. Retrieved 2020-05-17.
  6. ^ Press, Sibling Rivalry. "the specimen's apology by George Abraham". Sibling Rivalry Press. Retrieved 2020-05-17.
  7. ^ "A Strange Liminal Space: George Abraham's The Specimen's Apology". The Rumpus.net. 2019-05-03. Retrieved 2020-05-17.
  8. ^ "Palestine in Queer Time: A Review of George Abraham's The Specimen's Apology". Michigan Quarterly Review. 2019-01-16. Retrieved 2020-05-17.
  9. ^ a b "BIRTHRIGHT". Button Poetry. Retrieved 2020-05-17.
  10. ^ "Grad Student Profile: George Abraham | Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences". www.seas.harvard.edu. Retrieved 2020-05-17.