The Sultan Qaboos Higher Centre for Culture and Science on Wednesday announced the winners of the Sultan Qaboos Award for Culture, Arts and Letters at its eighth session 2019, which is allocated this year to Arabs in general in the field of sociology studies in the Culture branch and Arab music in the Arab Arts branch and Travel Literature in the Arts branch.
Announcing the winners of the awards, Habib bin Mohammed al Riyami, Secretary-General of the Sultan Qaboos Higher Centre for Culture and Science, at the press conference said: “The Sultan Qaboos Award for Culture, Arts and Letters is an annual award which is alternatively given every two years, once to Omanis only and another time to Arabs in general. The award has become a valuable indicator of the cultural, artistic and literary situation at the local and Arab levels.”
This year, he said that the award included three areas for Arabs in general — studies of sociology, Arab music and travel literature.
He pointed out that in the field of sociology studies for the branch of culture, the award in this field has been withheld as all the entries didn’t meet the standards of the award, and in the field of Arab music for the branch of arts the award has been given to Egyptian singer Ali Ibrahim Ali al Haggar, and in the field of Travel Literature in the Arts branch the award is given to Basim Mohammed Furat of Iraqi nationality residing
in New Zealand.
Al Riyami said the awards stem from the Royal attention of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos to encourage the intellectual achievements and in confirmation of the historic role of the Sultanate in the consolidation of cultural awareness, as well as His Majesty’s support for outstanding scholars, artists and writers. Explaining the process of registration, Dr Al Riyami said: “The submission of the works started on March 3 and closed on August 15. Around 78 works were submitted in the field of culture, 27 in the field of arts and 52 in literature.”
“From September 8 to 12, a committee consisting of Omani and Arab academics, and specialists did sorting of all works. The committee carried out procedures to ensure that the submitted works conformed to the specific standards in each field, and prepared lists of the nominated works for final arbitration, and others for the excluded works, indicating the reasons for exclusion for each work.
“Subsequently, the specialists at the Sultan Qaboos Higher Centre for Culture and Science sent these works to the members of the final judging committee, each member to write an individual critical report for their meeting in Muscat,” he added.