Visitors to Qatar National Library will have the chance to take part in a series of engaging events throughout June to hear the stories of Qatar’s globetrotting travelers in workshops, and lectures. Travel literature penned by early visitors to the Gulf offer interesting narratives that reveal more about early Qatari society, while visitors are invited to trace the journey of books in the Islamic world.
“Travel the World with Mango Languages” on 15 June is a hands-on session to introduce the interactive app, which offers courses for more than 70 languages, and can be accessed for free with a Library membership card. Session leaders will guide participants to explore the features of the Mango Languages app and to set up an account to begin learning the language of their choice.
Visitors can discover more about a different aspect of traveling in a panel discussion on 16 June titled “Western Travelers and the Image of the other through the Heritage Library Collection”. The discussion will focus on famous names that have marked travel literature and their contributions to the knowledge of the “other,” and will show how travel literature can offer a better understanding of the social and political history of Qatar and the Gulf region.
On 20 June, the well-known Qatari travel writer and television presenter will share his explorations in “Traveling Adventures with Ali Bin Towar Al Kuwari”, a presentation that promises to be full of adventure, entertainment, and knowledge.
Haya Al Sheeb, Information Services Librarian at the Library, said: “Whatever your plans are for this summer, whether you’re flying off or staying in Qatar, the Library can take you on an exciting journey during the month to explore new destinations and experiences through the world of books. We have something for everyone in June. We invite you to attend the events, and try learning a new language or an art technique that’s traveled the world.”
More travel tales will be presented at the “Tips for Young Travelers” on 29 June, where world traveler Khaled Al Ammari will share his advice from more than 20 years of adventures. Participants can learn from Al Ammari’s most important tips for before and during travel, and the best apps for getting the most important information for upcoming trips.
Visitors can travel back in time to the royal courts of the Renaissance on 21 June, with “Philharmonic at the Library: Music for the Kings”. In this final concert of the season, the music will be performed on historical instruments that were popular at the time of the Renaissance, including the cornet and the lute.
On 30 June, a lecture titled “The Journey of Books in the Age of the Islamic Manuscript” will discuss the tradition of book transfer in the age of the Islamic manuscript. Mahmoud Zaki, Manuscript Librarian at the Library, and Shabib bin Mohammed Al-Attiyah, a private manuscript collector and researcher, will show how books were transferred from one place to another by the people involved in their production, transmission, dissemination, and reception.
As part of the Library’s full program of events available to the community during the month of June, a range of hands-on workshops offer training on a set of practical skills and computing tools.
A workshop on 13 June, “Research Clinic: Looking for Science and Technology Articles,” will help readers get to know the Library’s wide range of collections. A hands-on activity will be provided to help researchers, students, and anyone interested to familiarize themselves on doing their own literature search on databases related to science and technology.
On 14 June, visitors have the chance to learn about the art of marbling, in the “Marbling on a Mug: A Global Art” workshop. After a short presentation on the history of the art and the science behind marbling, participants will personalize their own mug using the marbling technique.
This will be followed by a workshop introducing one of today’s leading cloud computing tools, Google Drive, on 15 June. This training will offer participants an ideal entry into the world of cloud computing. Another helpful session on 22 June will demonstrate “How to Create a Blog”. Presented by Best Life Qatar, participants will learn how to start their own blog and become familiar with different platforms such as blogsite, Instagram, and YouTube.
The Library continues its regular program of events throughout June, in the form of engaging activities for all ages. As part of the Kids Book Club series at the Library, a discussion on the book, Hethaa Al Eid, on 16 June will highlight the joy of dressing up for Eid and will be followed by a fun activity. “Hands on Arts and Crafts for Kids with Special Needs” will be a fun-filled activity for parents with special needs children on 22 June, a joint effort of the Library and Bassmet Amal Centre for Special Needs.
On 26 June, attendees at “Book Club for the Blind” will listen to the fascinating journey of Belal Hussain, a young blind man who learned and studied Islam, and who memorized the Qur’an.
The ‘Readers and Opinions Book Club’ meeting on 27 June will discuss the Arabic version of The Holy Sail, by Abdul Aziz Al Mahmoud. The novel tells multiple stories of love and honor set against the backdrop of Portuguese incursions into the Gulf in the 15th century. Copies of the book will be available at the User Services Desk.
Another of the Library’s regular events is “Inspiring Individuals”, which offers a forum for speakers who have excelled in their field to share their motivational stories with a wider audience.
In the session on 27 June, participants will get to know the inspirational Hamad Al-Mutawa, a Qatari artist who has overcome color blindness to become a cartoonist in genuine colors.
The Library will extend its support to the community with the workshop “IELTS Help is Here!” on 27 June. The session will highlight free Open Access resources available to those taking the academic IELTS examination. The event is open to all levels of English speakers and will also include some practical exercises and videos.