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July Blalack’s passion for the diverse literatures of Mauritania started in 2015 after attending the festival Traversées Mauritanides in the capital city of Nouakchott. Her history of Mauritanian novels was then published in The Oxford Handbook of Arab Novelistic Traditions in 2017. She has reviewed several Mauritanian books for ArabLit.org, and is now applying for grants to translate Mauritanian science fiction novels into English. July is also in the final stages of a doctoral program at SOAS, University of London, and her academic article “Hidāyat man ḥārā fī amr al-Naṣāra: the Western Sahara’s Missing Witness at the International Court of Justice?” won the Mark Tessler Graduate Student Paper Prize in 2020.