Abu Dhabi: Google Doodles are the fun, surprising, and sometimes spontaneous changes that are made to the Google logo to celebrate holidays, anniversaries, and the lives of famous artists, pioneers, and scientists. Google teams have created over 4,000 Doodles for the homepages around the world.
Google today celebrates Notaila Ibrahim Rashed’s accomplishments on the 86th anniversary of her birthday, through Google Doodle, illustrated by Jordanian-American guest artist Sara Alfageeh, but who was she?
Known affectionately as “Mama Loubna,” Rashed devoted her life to the creation and promotion of children’s literature. She helmed the influential Arabic children’s magazine “Samir” for decades, since it was founded in 1956 until 2002, and authored numerous beloved literary works for children and young adults alike. Through her books and short stories, she aspired to highlight ancient Egyptian literary traditions, while showcasing the rich cultural heritage of contemporary life in her home country.
Rashed was born on this day in 1934 in Cairo, Egypt. She went on to study at Cairo University, where she wrote her first children’s stories. By 1953, her work had jumped off the pages and onto the airwaves through radio broadcasts.
Just a few years later, Rashed helped found the groundbreaking educational magazine “Samir,” and she later oversaw the publication as its editor-in-chief.
Throughout her esteemed career, Rashed wrote and translated countless children’s stories, and collaborated with a diverse list of Arabic youth magazines, television shows, and radio programs. Among her most famous works is the 1979 two-part book “The Diary of Yasser Family,” which inspired the first children’s film created by the Egyptian National Council of Culture.
In 1965 she also founded the children’s book section of the publishing house Dar el-Hilal in Cairo, where she worked as a publisher for five years.
Rashed began writing for children and young people while in college. Her first short stories were broadcast on the radio in 1953. In her work, Rashed combined the literary-cultural traditions of ancient and ´modern´ Egypt. She wanted her texts to provide children all around the world with an authentic portrayal of life in contemporary Egypt.
She also translated children’s classics into Arabic, including Andersen’s ´The Emperor’s New Clothes´, Wilde’s ´The Happy Prince´ and Swell’s ´Black Beauty´.
She was a member of the High Committee of the Cairo International Festival for Children’s Film, and of the Child and Young People Committee of the Alexandria Library.
Rashed received a variety of awards in honor of her contributions to Egyptian literature and society, including the Medal of the Council of the Ministry of Culture in 2002.
In 1978 she was awarded the State Award for Children’s Literature and in 1995 she received the State Award for Children’s Journalism.