Accawi, Anwar F. 1943-

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ACCAWI, Anwar F. 1943-

PERSONAL: Born June 15, 1943, in Lebanon; married. Education: Warren Wilson College, B.A., 1969; University of Tennessee, M.S., 1987. Politics: Republican.

ADDRESSES: Home—Knoxville, TN. Office—University of Tennessee, English Language Institute, 907 Mountcastle, Knoxville, TN 37996. E-mail—[email protected].

CAREER: University of Tennessee, Knoxville, ESL professor, 1979—. Has also taught at National Evangelical Institute, Sidon High School, Sidon, Lebanon, and American University of Beirut, Beirut, Lebanon.

AWARDS, HONORS: Best American Essays, 1998, for The Telephone.


The Boy from the Tower of the Moon, Beacon Press (Boston, MA), 1999.

Contributor to The Best American Essays, Robert Atwan, editor, Houghton Mifflin (Boston, MA), 1998.

Contributor of essays to periodicals, including Double-take, Sun Magazine, and Now and Then.

SIDELIGHTS: Anwar Accawi grew up in the rural Lebanese village of Magdaluna. As a child in the 1940s, Accawi did not know technology until the arrival of the telephone at a nearby country store. With the introduction of technology was a loss—the simple country life was intruded upon and life in the traditional Lebanese village changed forever. His essay "The Telephone" won a place in the Best American Essays for 1998, and was based on his recollection of that event.

In his book The Boy from the Tower of the Moon, Accawi reflects upon his boyhood and the transitions resulting from modernization. Accawi visits themes of death, spirituality, sex, and changing habits. A reviewer from Publishers Weekly noted that although the essays are about the author's boyhood, they are "imbued with the ironic wisdom of a mature man looking back on youthful naivete." Janet Ingraham Dwyer, writing for Library Journal, called the essays in The Boy from the Tower of the Moon "charming," and Elsa Marston, a critic for MultiCultural Review, noted that Accawi's language is "both poetic and earthy" in essays that offer a sense of loss innocence for village life and childhood.



Daily Beacon, September 23, 1998, Carolyne Park, "Anthology Publishes Professor's Essays"; December 3, 2001, Tamar Wilner, "Local Writers Display Talent."

Library Journal, September 15, 1998, Nancy P. Shires, review of The Best American Essays 1998, p. 76; May 15, 1999, Janet Ingraham Dwyer, review of The Boy from the Tower of the Moon, p. 102.

Multicultural Review, September 1999, Elsa Marston, review of The Boy from the Tower of the Moon, p. 73.

Publishers Weekly, April 12, 1999, review of The Boy from the Tower of the Moon, p. 64.


Beacon Press Web site, (March 17, 2000).