Anton Shammas was born in the Arab village of Fassuta in Upper Galilee in 1950. He lived in Jerusalem for 20 and studied English literature and art history at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. For several years, he was co-editor of an Arabic monthly literary magazine; he has also written weekly newspaper columns in the Hebrew press. Shammas left Jerusalem in 1987 and now lives in Michigan, USA, where he is a professor of modern eastern literature at the University of Michigan.
His publications include a novel and two collections of poems in Hebrew, collections of poetry in Arabic, and a book for children. Shammas has received a number of literary awards, including the Lila Wallace Reader's Digest Writers' Award (1992). His novel, Arabesques, has been translated into nine languages.