Who is Suzy Kassem?
Suzy Kassem is an Egyptian-American writer, film director, philosopher, and poet. Her book, Rise Up and Salute the Sun is a collection of philosophical short stories, poetry and essays which amassed a cult following shortly after its release in the US market and Egypt. The book has been described as "a mix between Khalil Gibran's The Prophet and Paulo Coelho's The Alchemist."
In addition to writing, Kassem has worked as a music video and commercial director for over nine years in Hollywood. She is also "a director and writer for kids' films, most notably Harmony Parker." The film stars Madison Davenport who as the main title character, Harmony, is given an old music box for her seventh birthday and quickly discovers how the vibrational power of music can transform situations of conflict into peace.
In 2009, Kassem was set to direct a $12 million project in Cairo entitled Dimou Il Bahr, but the film came to a halt after she "tangled unsuccessfully with Egyptian authorities over her script about disenchanted youth fleeing 'suffocation' in their homeland."
Following the halt in production, Kassem blossomed into a writer of many mediums, including an ongoing position with the New York Times - About.com Style Channel, and many popular political articles for CounterPunch magazine. Through her universally-themed works, Kassem has become recognized as an evolutionary thinker and cross-cultural artist known to build bridges between Western and Eastern civilizations.