Three of Peter F. Drucker’s books on management will be translated into Arabic as part of Kalima, a project that aims to increase the number and choice of books available to readers in Arabic.
Launched in November 2007, Kalima (which means “word” in Arabic) has selected 100 titles to be translated initially. Among them is The Executive in Action, a one-volume collection from 1996 that includes three Drucker classics:Managing for Results, Innovation and Entrepreneurship and The Effective Executive.
Kalima is a nonprofit initiative funded by a grant from the Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture and Heritage. The project was undertaken to close a gap in information and perspectives that currently exists in the Arab world.
“Throughout Europe’s ‘Dark Ages’ and until the end of the first millennium,” Kalima representatives have noted, “Arab scholars and libraries led the world in translating, producing and preserving knowledge in science, medicine, philosophy and the arts. . . . Since then, however, few foreign works have found their way into Arabic. . . . To put the scale of the problem into perspective, Spain translates in one year the number of books that have been translated into Arabic in the last 1,000 years.”
The first 100 books selected by Kalima span many genres. Besides Drucker’s work, others include The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money by John Maynard Keynes, Middlemarch by George Eliot, The Aeneid by Virgil,Leviathan by Thomas Hobbes, The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner, The Looming Tower by Lawrence Wright,The Meaning of Relativity by Albert Einstein, and Margins of Philosophy by Jacques Derrida.
Fifty-two of the books are being translated from English, 10 from French, nine from German, seven from Latin, four from ancient Greek, three each from Old English and Greek, two each from Italian, Japanese and Mandarin Chinese, and one each from Czech, Danish, Norwegian, Russian, Swedish and Yiddish.
“It’s an honor to have Peter’s writing selected for a project like this,” said Rick Wartzman, director of the Drucker Institute. “Given his focus on the importance of knowledge in today’s global economy, it’s also most fitting.”