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In the heart of Manama’s Al Fadhel neighbourhood, a legend was born in 1950. Amin’s journey from obscurity to becoming a trailblazing cultural figure in the Kingdom of Bahrain is nothing short of remarkable. His influence and contribution to the arts and culture scene are an inspiration to many.

He began his literary career in 1973, when he published his first short story collection, “Here is the Rose, Here We Dance” after which he published his second collection, “Butterflies,” published by Dar Al-Ghad in Bahrain.

Amin is also considered one of the first translators in Bahrain, as he translated many international literary and cinematic works into Arabic, such as “Film as a Subversive Art” by Amos Vogel, and “Sculpting in Time” by Tarkovsky. In addition, his stories were translated into some foreign languages.

Authoring more than twenty scripts for television series, and seven scripts for dramatic cinematic films, Saleh wrote the story and script of the first feature film in Bahrain, “The Barrier,” in 1990. In 2008, he was chosen as chairman of the jury for a film competition at the Saudi Film Festival. He is a member of the Bahrain Writers Association, a member of the Awal Theater, and a member of the Bahrain Cinema Club.

Read more by Maram Saleh

He is well-known because he specialises in the translation of books on filmography, a field that was growing at the time in Arab cultural spheres. Back then, translation was mostly intended for politics and novels, with little attention given to cinema.

He decided to take the first step and start translating cinematic works since no one had done it. Reading the kind of materials and cinematic works he had chosen to translate, it is evident that Saleh is interested in exploring remote spheres in Arab literature, one of which is cinema. He introduced the Arab world to lesser-known cinemas, figures, and aesthetics.

This impressive body of work has earned Saleh numerous accolades, including the Order of Efficiency First Class awarded to him by the King of Bahrain in 2007.

In the 18th session of the Sultan Bin Ali Al Owais Cultural Award for 2022-2023, Saleh, emerged victorious in the categories of story, novel, and theatre.

Unique creative vision

In this regard, the Secretary-General of the Al Owais Cultural Foundation, Abdul Hamid Ahmed, confirmed that the committee decided that Amin Saleh would win The Story, Novel, and Play Award, for having a different creative experience, represented by the short stories, texts and works he wrote. Others indicate that he is diverse and has many interests.

It is worth noting that for the 18th session of the competition, 490 candidates applied for this section in the fields of creativity.

The Al Owais Award recognises innovators who embody the essence of Arab thought and the aspirations of the Arab nation. Out of 1,861 nominees across various fields, Amin Saleh stood out among nearly 500 contenders in storytelling, novel-writing, and theatre.

Renowned for his multifaceted creativity as a novelist, playwright, screenwriter, and translator, Saleh is celebrated for his distinctive narrative style and eloquent language. His dedication to cinematic translation has yielded eight enriched volumes, adding depth to the Arab literary landscape.

Amin Saleh’s remarkable journey from a nascent storyteller in Al Fadhel to a celebrated cultural icon in the Kingdom of Bahrain is a testament to his passion, dedication, and pioneering spirit. With an impressive body of work that includes groundbreaking translations of cinematic masterpieces and award-winning scripts for television and film, Saleh has not only made a lasting impact on the local arts and culture scene but has also garnered international recognition for his unique creative vision.

Amin Saleh’s commitment to pushing boundaries and exploring new frontiers in Arab literature and cinema continues to inspire and captivate audiences around the globe, solidifying his status as a true cultural treasure.

Maram Saleh, a Bahraini law student, finds inspiration in the realms of research and writing.