Anton Shammas was born to a Lebanese mother who moved to Fassuta in 1936 to teach French at the local girls' school. His father was Hanna Shammas, a barber and shoemaker. He was one of six children. In 1962, Shammas and his family moved to Haifa where he studied in an integrated Jewish-Arab school.
In 1968, Shammas moved to Jerusalem and studied English literature and art history at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He was one of the founders of the Arabic magazine "The East" (Arabic: ?????), which he edited from 1971 to 1976. His first poem was published in the literary supplement of Haaretz newspaper. In 1974, Shammas published his first anthology of poetry in Arabic, "Imprisoned in my Own Awakening and Sleep" (Arabic: ???? ????? ?????? ), as well as an anthology of Hebrew poems, "Hardcover" (Hebrew: ????? ???).
In 1975, Shammas began to work for Israel Television, producing Arabic language programs. He also wrote for the Hebrew newspapers. Some of his articles explored the problem of Arab identity in a Jewish state. In 1979, he published his anthology "No Man's Land" (Hebrew: ??? ????).
Shammas is known mainly for his writing in Hebrew and Hebrew translations of Arab literature, such as the work of Emile Habibi. His acclaimed Hebrew novel Arabesques (1986) was translated into several languages, including English, Spanish, French, German, Italian, although it has never appeared in Arabic. Shammas has also translated Arabic poetry into English.
Shammas now lives in the United States, where he is a professor of Middle Eastern literature at the University of Michigan. Literature - Novelist - Anton Shammas