Shakespeare Lane

A new play translation: Arabic to English
Published by International Centre for Performance Studies (ICPS)
Tangier, Morocco
  • By Zoubeir Ben Bouchta
  • Translated by Rajae Khaloufi
  • Edited by George F. Roberson
  • With the invaluable support of Khalid Amine

I have two memories: my personal memory and that of Shakespeare, who is partially me. I would rather say: two memories possess me. There is an area where they merge. There is a woman’s face; I do not know to which century it belongs.
―Jorge Luis Borges
The Memory of Shakespeare

Albarrani: If he wasn’t a soldier, then he was somehow working like a soldier. Something in his work must have resembled guns… this is a famous Tangier street, without such power the English would never have named it for him.

Marshana: Words were Shakespeare’s guns, but his words resurrect rather than kill. That is why his power lives on…
  • Read an excerpt, click here

Back cover
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  • See below for: analysis, prefaces, play premiere, acknowledgments, external link
Shakespeare universally symbolizes the essential themes of the tragedies Hamlet, Othello and Romeo and Juliet. With conflicts of power and hopeless love ―along with slander, jealousy, envy, hatred, vengeance, and fortune― Shakespeare Lane reflects a contemporary reading of Tanjawi society springing from a pen never touched by Shakespeare’s fingertips.
―Zoubeir Ben Bouchta
  • Read the author's full book preface, click here
  • Read the author's professional biography, click here (French) and here (English)

Shakespeare Lane broadly highlights the intricate realities of Moroccan society ―from the city’s historical background right up to the main features of modern Tangier― yet it has universal relevance addressing world-wide issues such as social and political corruptness and terrorism threatening peace and security the world over.
―Rajae Khaloufi
  • Read the Translator's full book preface, click here
  • Read the Translator's brief biography, click here

Using Bard-like comedy and social commentary set in a magical garden, Shakespeare Lane persistently calls norms into question as it informs, surprises, and challenges the audience again and again. One point stands clear, the famous crossroads city is at a societal crossroads: what will the citizenry choose for their future?
―Dr George F. Roberson
  • Read the editor's full book preface, click here
  • Read the editor's brief biography, click here

Zanqat Shakespeare

Premiere in Tangier, February 2007

  • Read and view information about it, click here
  • See photographs, click here
  • List of performances in Morocco and Tunisia, click here

  • Translator's Acknowledgments
The present work is the fruit of the collaborative efforts of a number of people. I am especially obliged, of course, to the author of Zanqat[1] Shakespeare, Zoubeir Ben Bouchta. I would like to offer him my sincerest thanks for writing such a unique masterwork and for giving me the permission to commence the translation of the play to render it accessible for the first time to Anglophone readers.

I would like to offer my deep gratitude to Dr. George F. Roberson, the Senior Fulbright Research Scholar in Tangier, who has supported me throughout my work with his friendliness, patience, knowledge and hard-work. I attribute the magnitude and refinement of the English version of this play to his efforts and endless encouragement. One simply could not find a better or a friendlier editor.

I’m particularly indebted to my mentor Dr. Khalid Amine. He not only provided me with the source text, but was from the very beginning of the project, and constantly throughout, an invaluable connecting link between me and Dr. Roberson. He faithfully and continuously offered his advice and hints, along with sincere encouragement, that helped me achieve this work.

I wish to fully acknowledge the brotherly assistance and kindness offered to me by Dr. Mustapha El Ghachi. I wish to thank him as well for supplying a great deal of valuable historical data together with unmatched friendliness, kind support, and a motivating worthy smile.

In a word, I can not overstate how sincere is my gratitude to all those people who have earnestly helped me bring into existence the English version of Zanqat Shakespeare. This work would not have seen the light of existence without the collaborative efforts, support and assistance of such noteworthy people. This publication was funded by the International Centre for Performance Studies: thank you ICPS.

―Rajae Khaloufi

[1] Meaning "street" in Arabic.