"Poetry Month: Inspiration, Community, Tradition." Frank Sherlock. Exit Strata, April 2012.
On In the Heart of the Heart of Another Country
"When Language Fails." Douglas A. Powell. Poetry Flash, August 1989 (No. 197).
Review of The Arab Apocalypse
“Our Memory Has No Future.” Ammiel Alcalay. The Nation, March 7, 1994.
Review of Paris, When It’s Naked and Of Cities and Women
“Artist Transforms Verse Into Poetry.” Daedalus Howell, San Francisco Chronicle, December 18, 1998.
“In the Heart of the Heart of Another Country by Etel Adnan.” Stacy Szymaszek. The Poetry Project Newsletter, February/March 2009 (No. 218).
Etel Adnan: Critical Essays on the Arab-American Writer and Artist (2002, edited by Lisa Suhair Majaj and Amal Amireh).
“I React to What is Happening in the World”. Vera Kern, Qantara.de, 2012.
“The Non Worldly World: Conversation with Etel Adnan”. Kathleen Weaver. Poetry Flash, May 1986 (No. 158).
“Etel Adnan’s ‘There’ – A Meditation on Conflict”. Aftim Saba. Al Jadid, 1998,
Etel Adnan intervied by Lynne Tillman. Bidoun Magazine.
…Adnan’s is also a very kinetic world, bordering on the chaotic. “Time passes from right to left. Planets intrude on the sky. A rain of daffodils appeases the drought.” The earth is at once both the passive victim of an intrusion and a vigorously personified participant in the struggle for vivid life. Adnan’s daffodils have the human quality of empathy, of seeking to pacify a land stricken by drought.
—From a review of Seasons
“Listen to Etel Adnan.” Mark Grimes. Al Jadid, vol 13, nos. 58/59.
…Writing here is the practice of memory—not as the mere recollection or retelling of events, but as the making-present of the past, the scripting of that present-making in writing’s work. What else is memory-work than the lived experience, in the now, of what we tell ourselves is “past,” even as we experience such pasts, refigured and rewritten, in the sensual details and tangled contexts of the presents? “Memoir” is one name for such a genre; yet here Adnan goes well beyond making memory “literary.” Instead history—both personal and public—is always happening now, made manifest in the writing writing itself…
—From a review of In the Heart of the Heart of Another Country
David Buuck, Traffic, 2006-2007 (No. 2).
“This is not a book which says who is right and who is wrong in that war—though I have my opinion on that,” she says.“I was trying to show how some cultural values which have their good side in time of peace can, in time of war, lead to genocide…”
—From an interview with Etel Adnan about her novel, Sitt Marie Rose
“Outside the Tribe.” Judith Pierce, Middle East Sept. 1983:51-52.
…The reader quickly notices that Adnan refrains from following the traditional subject, verb, object sentence patterns and invents semantic and lexical items throughout her book. Sometimes, Adnan creates an auditory effect by adding vowels to words like “fever” and “stoooory.” Other times, her words are separated by slashes, hyphens, brackets, asterisks, and question marks or are followed by arrows and colons rather than dashes. (…) Adnan’s use of such symbols conveys the illogic of war’s logic without ever mentioning the word “war.”
—From a review of In/Somnia.
“Etel Adnan’s New Language: Poems that Rewrite Masculine Discourse.” Rim Zahra and Razzan Zahra. Al Jadid, Issue 49.
…We have no hint that the poet may be writing from a Lebanese experience, with the particular tragic view of history a Lebanese is positioned to witness: “On a chapped and gaping wall / an adolescent in Arabic / wrote / ‘Is there life before death?’ (final text of Holderlin).” The juxtaposition of high literature with graffiti may be as important as the setting, and it may be wrong to anchor the formal disruption of these sequences in political or social commentary. (…)
Etel Adnan’s poems drift down the page in little jolts and surprises; stanzas in short lines will open with farflung examples (but of what?), unpredictable juxtapositions (“I know flowers to be funeral companions”) which will resolve suddenly around a maxim or a new point of view (…).
—From a review of The Spring Flowers Own & The Manifestation of the Voyage. Michael Beard. World Literature Today.
(Winter 1992) : 199.