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UT to bring award-winning poet and activist to campus Nov. 4

The University of Toledo College of Arts and Letters is bringing award-winning poet and activist Dr. Mohja Kahf to campus as the speaker for its 18th Annual Maryse and Ramzy Mikhail Memorial Lecture.

The professor of comparative literature and Middle East studies at the University of Arkansas will speak at the free, public lecture 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 4 in the Law Center McQuade Auditorium.

Dr. Mohja Kahf

The title of her reading is “I Want Milk, I Want Honey: An Afternoon of Poetry with Mohja Kahf.”

Kahf was born in Syria, grew up in Indiana, and has taught at the University of Arkansas since 1995.

Her book titled “Hagar Poems” was described by Booklist in 2016 as “Forthright and fearless poetry. Kahf brilliantly transposes the disorienting experience of life in the U.S. for many immigrant and marginalized women with the rich history of the Abrahamic religions.”

For her work, Kahf has won numerous awards, including a Pushcart Prize for her essay, “The Caul of Inshallah.” In 2017, her novel, “The Girl in the Tangerine Scarf,” was chosen for the 2017 One Book Project by Indiana University East.

“We are honored to welcome Dr. Mohja Kahf to our campus,” said Charlene Gilbert, dean of the UT College of Arts and Letters. “Dr. Kahf is a talented poet whose work challenges stereotypes while simultaneously exploring the cultural nuances of both her home and adopted countries.”

The Mikhail Lecture Series is sponsored through the Mikhail Endowment Fund, originally established through a donation from the Mikhail family to honor the work and contributions of Maryse Mikhail and her involvement in educational, philanthropic and interfaith organizations.

The fund supports an annual lecture dealing with Arab culture, history, politics, economics and other aspects of life in the Middle East, including issues of peace and justice.


is UT's Media Relations Specialist. Contact her at 419.530.2077 or
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