The winners of the Sheikh Zayed Book Awards have been announced. The prize is among the top awards dedicated to supporting Arabic literature, language, and culture. The winners will be presented with their awards on May 23 in Abu Dhabi at the start of the Abu Dhabi International Book Fair.

These awards cover eight categories: Translation, Contribution to the Development of Nations, Literary and Art Criticism, Young Authors, Children’s Literature, Arab Culture in Other Languages, Publishing and Technology, Contribution to the Development of Nations. A final category, Cultural Personality of the Year, will be announced at a later date.

The prize is a rich one, offering $200,000 to the winner in each category, as well as $272,000 in the category of Culture Personality of the Year. This year's prizes saw a 23% increase in overall submissions, to 2,349 entries from 57 countries.

“As one of the Arab world’s leading cultural awards we are proud to support a flourishing international publishing landscape and pleased to see winners are from five countries across the globe," Dr Ali bin Tamim, chairman of the Abu Dhabi Arabic Language Centre and Secretary General of the Sheikh Zayed Book Award, said. "The judges were especially impressed with the range of genres, the breadth of topics and the ambition of the scholars and writers represented here. This year’s winners highlight the depth and prestige of the Award in the Arab world and beyond. We commend their achievement and look forward to seeing more superb work in the years to come.

The winners for the 2020 prizes are:


  • Fee Athar Enayat Al Zayyat (In the Footsteps of Enayat Al-Zayyat) by Egyptian writer Iman Mersal, published in 2019 by Al Kotob Khan Library

Children’s Literature:

  • Rehlat Fannan (An Artist's Journey) by Tunisian author Mizouni Bannani, published by Dar Al Mua'nasa Publishing in 2020

Young Author:

  • Eshkalyat Al Thaat Al Saredah Fee Al Rwayah Al Nesaayah Al Saudiah (The Problems of the Narrated Self in the Saudi Feminist Novel (1999 - 2012) (Critical Study) by Dr. Asma Muqbil Awad Alahmadi, published by Arab Scientific Publishers Inc. in 2020

Arab Culture in Other Languages:

  • Arabic Oration: Art and Function by Tahera Qutbuddin (American) (Brill Publishers, 2019)


  • Impostures by Al-Hariri, translated from Arabic to English by Michael Cooperson (American) (Library of Arabic Literature in 2020)

Prize for Literary and Art Criticism:

  • Massar al Tahdeeth fil Funoon al Tashkeeliyya men al Ursooma ela al Lawhah ( The Path of Modernisation in the Visual Arts: From Drawing to Painting) by Dr. Khelil Gouia

Prize for Contribution to the Development of Nations

  • Turath al Este'la Bayn al Folklore wal Majal al Dini (Legacy of Supremacy between Folklore and Religion) by Dr. Saeed El-Masri.

Publishing and Technology:

  • Dar Al Jadeed, Lebanon