So I installed a couple of arabic fonts in my cave writing software but of course they don’t work as I had hoped. But hey that would be too easy right if it worked first time? Of course it would. Anyway the main issues are you can’t type arabic text into the text field in the software but that in itself is not a big deal because (and I thought I was being quite smart here) you can type it straight into the xml file. So I did this however when you preview the work it reproduces the text back to front i.e. left to right instead of right to left as arabic text should be.
I don’t want spend my whole time just trying to get the software to read arabic font so for the moment until someone is willing to code a software plugin or the like for me I think the best solution will be to include the arabic text as images and audio.
I had the good fortune to meet Dr. Abeer Aloush from the University of Pennsylvania at the Digital Humanities Summer Institute 2014 at the University of Victoria, B.C. a few months ago and she agreed to collaborate on this project with me. Conveniently Dr. Aloush was taking part in a electronic literature workshop there and had just remarked that there didn’t seem to be much evidence of Arabic electronic literature out there. So I think a visit to Dr. Aloush with an audio recorder is in order soon.
However after my wranglings with arabic font installation I am quite tempted to just translate this version of the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam instead