Fady Joudah

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Fady Joudah
Joudah at the 2009 Brooklyn Book Festival.
Joudah at the 2009 Brooklyn Book Festival.
Austin, Texas
OccupationPhysician, Poet

Fady Joudah is a Palestinian-American poet and physician. He is the 2007 winner of the Yale Series of Younger Poets Competition for his collection of poems The Earth in the Attic.[1]


Joudah was born in Austin, Texas in 1971 to Palestinian refugee parents, and grew up in Libya and Saudi Arabia. He returned to the United States to study to become a doctor, first attending the University of Georgia in Athens, and then the Medical College of Georgia, before completing his medical training at the University of Texas. Joudah currently practices as an ER physician in Houston, Texas. He has also volunteered abroad with the humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders.[2]

Joudah's poetry has been published in a variety of publications, including Poetry magazine,[3] Iowa Review, Beloit Poetry Journal, Kenyon Review, Drunken Boat, Prairie Schooner and Crab Orchard Review.

In 2006, he published The Butterfly's Burden, a collection of recent poems by Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish translated from Arabic,[4] which was a finalist for the 2008 PEN Award for Poetry in Translation.[3]

In 2012, Joudah published Like a Straw Bird It Follows Me, and Other Poems, a collection of poems by Palestinian poet Ghassan Zaqtan translated from Arabic, which won the 2013 International Griffin Poetry Prize.[5] In 2017, Joudah translated Zaqtan's The Silence That Remains,[6] published by Copper Canyon Press.

His most recent book of poetry, Alight[7] was published by Copper Canyon Press in 2013.

In other media[edit]

In October 2014, Joudah was interviewed for the documentary Poetry of Witness, directed by independent filmmakers Billy Tooma and Anthony Cirilo.


  • The Earth in the Attic. Yale University Press. April 2008. ISBN 978-0-300-13431-5.
  • Mahmoud Darwish (2007). The Butterfly's Burden. Translator Fady Joudah. Copper Canyon Press. ISBN 978-1-55659-241-6.
  • Mahmoud Darwish (2009). If I were another. Translator Fady Joudah. Macmillan. ISBN 978-0-374-17429-3.
  • Alight (Copper Canyon Press, 2013)
  • Mahmoud Darwish (2017). The Silence That Remains. Translator Fady Joudah. Copper Canyon Press. ISBN 978-1-55659-514-1.


  1. ^ Fritz Lanham (April 13, 2008). "Palestinian-American doctor turns suffering into song". The Houston Chronicle.
  2. ^ "Fady Joudah: Doctor and poet". Institute for Middle East Understanding. Archived from the original on September 30, 2011. Retrieved October 2, 2011.
  3. ^ a b Foundation, Poetry (December 23, 2020). "Fady Joudah". Poetry Foundation.
  4. ^ Steve Kowit (30 July 2006). "Poets beautifully plead for peace for people of Mideast". The San Diego Union-Tribune. Archived from the original on 23 November 2008.
  5. ^ "Griffin Poetry Prize: Fady Joudah".
  6. ^ "The Silence That Remains: Selected Poems by Ghassan Zaqtan, Fady Joudah, trans".
  7. ^ "Alight by Fady Joudah".