Jalal Hussein Mohamed Zangabady Laristany was born on December 1st, 1951 in Kurdistan, Iraq.
He is an Iraqi poet, translator and researcher in both Arabic and Kurdish. He translates Persian, English, Spanish and Turkish into Arabic and Kurdish… He is a proponent of the power of culture and intercultural dialogue among peoples and nations. Since his early childhood, he has engaged in cultural struggle as an independent radical democrat.
An encyclopedic self-education: He started mature reading in 1961, writing in 1963 and then publishing in newspapers and magazines in 1967. But he has published only a few of his own writings and translated books so far. Jalal Zangabady has written and translated dozens of books, and even more.
Being one of the few writers who are fluent in the five main Kurdish dialects, he writes in a quasi-unified Kurdish language. He sometimes translates his Arabic works into Kurdish and vice versa. He also translates foreign texts into both Kurdish and Arabic at the same time.
He has been publishing his writings under his pen names “C Rose” and “J Zangabady,” in addition to more than a dozen other pen names.
He is a self-made man: The assassination of his father in late 1960 for his activism in national issues made him a mature guy. He engaged in various businesses and crafts. He worked as a skirt maker, a porter, a mosquito fighter and a construction worker. From 1987 to 1997, he sold books on the sidewalks. Eventually, Zangabady was subject to expulsion and deportation. He also lost two houses through confiscation and explosions during the recent era of oppression.
He graduated from the Primary Teachers College in Kirkuk in 1969 and worked as a primary school teacher from 1971 to 1991. Then, he started a career in newspapers and magazines. He worked as an editor, a supervisor of the culture articles and a linguist proofreader in the literature, arts and culture department, and as a secretary, a manager, and editor in chief for a few magazines in Iraqi Kurdistan.
He proofread and revised hundreds of literary texts and research papers, and he also composed or translated books for several Kurdish and Iraqi writers and researchers, including university professors.
He contributed to the founding bodies of the Kurdistan Translators Association in 1992, the People’s Movement of Kurdistan in 1996, the Cultural and Social Center of Kirkuk in 1998, and the two magazines, Noshafaq (The New Dawn) and Mendalany Baba Karkar (The Children of Papa Karkar) in 2003 in Kirkuk.
In 2000, he played the role of the main witness in the documentary The Lost Territory, which is about the scorched-earth policy, i.e. the destruction of the natural and human environments in Iraqi Kurdistan.
Jalal Zangabady published the following books in hard cover:
1. Awtar at-Tana’i…, Farhad Shakly, translated from Kurdish, Dar al-Hassad, Damascus, Syria 2004
2. Dhil as-Saout and Other Stories, Hama Kareem Arif, translation and preface in Kurdish, Kirkuk, Iraqi Kurdistan 2005
3. Qassa’id Ta’ba Ayy Unouan, Jalal Zangabady, Al-Râad Foundation, Kirkuk, 2009
4. Here is my Miracle (Love poems), Jalal Zangabady, Dar al-Jamal, Beirut, Baghdad 2009
5. One Year in Hell, The Diary of Mahabad Kurdhaghi, translated from Kurdish, 2010, The Ministry of Culture and Youth, Erbil, Iraqi Kurdistan
6. The Collection of Omar Khayyam Poems, A Study and a Rhythmical Translation from Persian, Dar al-Jamal Publications, Beirut, Baghdad 2010
7. The Kurdish Culture: Problems, Dilemmas and Horizons, published by Sardeem Foundation, Sulaymaniyah 2010
8. The Maid, Kalaweej (novel), (Translation) – Al-Madaa Foundation, 2012
9. The Legend of Kelly Nawcardan (children’s novel) Kalaweej, (Translation), Al-Madaa Foundation, 2012
10. Three Stories for Kids, Kalaweej, (Translation), Al-Madaa Foundation, 2012
11. Jorge Manrique: The Poet of his Time, Arab Scientific Publishers, Beirut 2012
12. The Bloody Departure (novel), Hama Karim Arif (translation), Erbil 2012
13. 81 selected poems by Sargon Paul, translation into Kurdish, Sulaymaniyyah 2012
14. The Quartets of al-Khayyam, translated by Awni, A Revision and a Study in Kurdish, Erbil 2012
15. The Plight of Zoroaster and Other Poems by Borhan Shaoui, translation into Kurdish, Beirut 2013
16. Thus Danced the Creature Mostaqbilithin, An Anti-epic, Jalal Zangabady, Erbil 2013
17. Let’s Have A Closer Look at al-Khayyam, in Arabic: Jalal Zangabady, translated into Kurdish by Hamma Kareem Arif, Erbil 2013
18. The Encyclopedia of Omar al-Khayyam, his Scientific, Philosophical and Literary Letters, revision and preface by Dr. Rahim Ridha Zadeh Malak, translation, comments and introduction by Jalal Zangabady, Dar al-Erjuan and Dar at-Taqween 2013
1. Twenty Kurdish Stories by Twenty Kurdish Authors, co-translation: (7 stories by Jalal Zangabady and the rest by Faisal Mustafa Haji, Abdul Ghani Ali Yahya, Mohammed Saber Mawloud) in addition to two studies by professors Hussain Arif and Dr. Ezzedine Mustafa Rasool) (210 pages, large volume), published by the Secretariat for Culture and Youth in the region of Kurdistan, Erbil, 1985
2. Hours of Cane, 60 selected poems by Chirco Pecs, co-translation: (56 poems by Jalal Zangabady and the rest by Mohammad Muqry and Kareem Dashti), introduced by Saadi Youssef (140 pages, average volume) Al-Madaa Foundation, Damascus, Beirut 1994
3. She Refuses Exile Wherever Deported, 10 stories by Fazel Kareem Ahmed, co-translation (5 stories were translated by Jalal Zangabady 2009)
He has also published more than a dozen books, as either an author or a translator in magazines, such as The Book of the Edition, as well as on some internet sites.
There are still more than 10 books to be published, including: The Collection of al-Khayyam Poems, revision and translation into Kurdish; I Shall Dance in the Sea and Other Poems; Al-Khayyam: the Prominent Writer who Preoccupied Translators; Kurdistan and the Kurds in the Perspective of Male and Female Orientalists; The Quartets of al-Khayyam, translated by Jamil Sidqi al-Zahawi, revision and critique; and The History and Culture of the Turkmen.
He has also frequently written on a few internet sites since 1999.
The website of the writer Jalal Zangabady is the following:
His Facebook page is: http://jhm0051.blogspot.com/
Throughout his career in the cultural field, he has not received any internal or external scholarship from the Iraqi cultural agencies and institutions (including the Kurdish ones). He has given only a few lectures. He was invited to read his poems only a few times at the Marbad Festival, Baghdad (1985); the Culture Week, Erbil (1992); Al-Raad Foundation, the Iraqi House of Culture in Kirkuk (2008); the Iraqi House of Culture in Babylon (April 2009) (a heart attack prevented him from attending); The Poetic Dawn Festival in Tehran (2011); the Al-Raad Foundation and the Iraqi Writers Union in Kirkuk (2012).
Only a few writers, critics and fair journalists have paid attention to his almost encyclopedic works of poetry, translation and research.
The Kalaweej magazine, published in the city of Sulaymaniyah, issued a special dossier about him in 140 pages, including about 40 poems, an interview with the writer and seven articles about his poetry (2/2008).
He was also honored by the Kurdistan Journalists Union in 1993 and 1998, at the Kalaweej Festival in 2005, and in the Barazan newspaper in 2011.