Model Role Details

Samira Azzam

Samira Azzam

Sector : Cultural Figures , Writers

Personal Info

  • Country of residence : Jordan
  • Gender : Female
  • Born in : 1927
  • Age : 89
  • Curriculum vitae :


Samira Azzam (September 13, 1927 - August 8, 1967) was a Palestinian writer, broadcaster, and translator known for her collections of short stories. In 1948, Azzam fled Palestine with her husband and family in the midst of the 1948 Palestine War. Her collections of stories are renowned for examining the entirety of the Palestinian identity during this time period. Her first set of short stories, Small Things, was published in 1954, and examined women’s role in Palestinian society. After returning to Beirut in 1959, she examined other Palestinian social structures such as the class hierarchy. She published two more collections of short stories during her life, The Big Shadow and The Clock and the Man. Throughout her writing, she does not cast blame as to the cause of these social structures, but rather creates plot lines that characterize these different sub-cultures within Palestinian society, relating them to political situation of this historical period. Therefore, her writing creates a very holistic view of Palestinian national identity during this time in history.

Samira Azzam was born into a Christian Orthodox family in Acre, Palestine. She attended elementary school in Acre and high school in Haifa at "Takmilyet Al-Rahibat." before becoming a school teacher at age 16. During this time, she began writing articles for a Palestinian newspaper under the alias “Coastal Girl.” In 1948, Azzam and her family were relocated to Lebanon due to the 1948 Palestinian exodus. Azzam left her family after two years to become the headmistress of an all girl’s school in Iraq. It was in Iraq that she began her career as a radio broadcaster for the Near East Asia Broadcasting Company. First, she wrote for the program “Women's Corner” before being moved to Beirut by the broadcasting station, where she was the head of the program “With the Morning.”. Her voice became a regular presence in the lives of many Arabs, making her writing all the more powerful.

Azzam's writing, in many cases, revolved around the "Palestinian experience in the Diaspora".

On December 24, 1959, Azzam married Adib Yousef Hasan. They returned to Iraq for a short period of time, however, had to leave shortly after. When the monarchy fell, the new republic accused Azzam’s broadcasts of being hostile towards the new regime Upon her return to Beirut, she began writing for numerous women's publications and as well as translating English classics into Arabic. She became extremely politically active in the 1960s.
Little Things (1954 – stories)
The Big Shadow (1956 – stories)
And Other Stories (1960 – stories)
The Clock and the Man (1963 – stories)
The Festival Through the Western Window (1971 – stories)
Echoes (2000 – stories)
Samira Azzam died of a heart attack on August 8, 1967.


Achievements and Awards

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