Arab Today, arab today authors at berlin festival talk about \arab spring\
Last Updated : GMT 21:28:06
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

Authors at Berlin festival talk about \'Arab Spring\'

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today Authors at Berlin festival talk about \'Arab Spring\'

Berlin - DW

The revolts in the Arab world have inspired a body of works that try to elucidate the events. Some writers have focused on the protests; others are pondering the future role of art and literature in the region.In December 2010, a young man set himself on fire in a small Tunisian town called Sidi Bouzid. His name was Mohamed Bouazizi. With his "sacrificial gesture," as French-Moroccan writer Tahar Ben Jelloun termed it in the opening speech of Berlin's literature festival, this young man in his late twenties unwittingly sparked a series of revolts whose long-term outcomes remain uncertain but whose significance has been likened to the fall of the Berlin Wall.Ben Jelloun was so moved that he decided to write a fictional account of Bouazizi's last days. His Mohamed in "Par le Feu" ("By Fire") represents all humiliated men. "I saw him on his bed like a white mummy and thought to myself: 'This man had a life, a youth, a failed love affair, disappointments.' I wanted to return his humanity to him," Ben Jelloun told Deutsche Welle. For him, a crucial outcome of the Arab Spring is that dignity and honor have been restored to a whole generation. His mordant forays into the minds of Zine El Abidine Ben Ali and Hosni Mubarak as it dawns on them they are losing their grip on power in his other 2011 publication "L'étincelle" ("The Spark") are his modest revenge on two men who deprived so many of their karama for so long.This Arabic word, as British writer Johnny West explains in the introduction to his book "Karama! Journeys through the Arab Spring," combines the notions of dignity, honor and self-respect. In his volume of what he calls "protagonist journalism," West offers an animated insight into the outlook of those who were willing to risk their lives to get their karama back. Like Ben Jelloun, he is certain that this can never be taken away from them. Moreover, he told Deutsche Welle that "there will never be a monopoly on thought by any group holding the state in any of these countries again. Intellectual opposition and freedom of thought will no longer be crushed."Optimistic as they are, the two writers are not wearing rose-tinted glasses. They are both acutely aware of how volatile the situation is in the region and of the many hurdles that need to be overcome. They know it will be a challenge for many to maintain their sense of karama. Ben Jelloun warns that from a political point of view it has been imperative to remain vigilant since it is so much easier to revert to dictatorship than it is to build up a democracy. West suggests that the United States and the European Union implement a contemporary equivalent of the Marshall Plan, but at the same time expresses serious doubt that this will happen given the current state of affairs."The danger of not solving the economic problems is that the indignity of being useless will be with millions every day who do not have a job, and there is only so long your memories of the great glory of the revolution can carry you," West cautioned.Ben Jelloun and West share the view that cultural events and literature have an important role to play. "Some, including myself, believe the explosion of Arabic popular culture has been the single most important change in the region in the last 20 years, dwarfing mere events such as wars, peace talks, terror campaigns and regime change," West writes in his book.He said that today the Arabic blogosphere was fizzing with poems, cartoons and reportages, which clearly demonstrated how important the written word was. And while Ben Jelloun conceded in Berlin that literature could not do much in the face of human tragedy, he said it was its role to accompany it, to not lie, and to be sincere. "Imagine a society without literary production, theater, cinema, music! It's impossible! Culture is indispensable. We need to dream, imagine and cultivate our senses. It's as vital as bread," he said.In a round table discussion at the festival, this year's winner of the International Prize for Arabic Fiction, Moroccan writer Mohammed Achaari, said that contemporary Arab literature was on par with the very best of world literature precisely because it met the highest aesthetic requirements, as well as being significant in terms of content.He reported that after decades in which poets had been punished with  torture, imprisonment, exile or death for broaching taboo subjects such as human rights in their works, in recent years, the novel had provided a relatively free space for young writers to examine social injustice, as well as traditionally unacceptable subjects such as politics, religion and sex. Achaari half-joked that if politicians had read more, they might have realized that their societies were in crisis.For exiled Iraqi writer Fadhil Al-Azzawi, it is crucial that writers in and from the Arab world ask themselves very carefully, now that their countries are in transition, what they should write about. "The key subject is the struggle between modernity and extremism, traditionalism and antiquated patterns of thinking," he said."What is most important for literature and for people on the street is to examine how to modernize our societies, stop fundamentalism from developing and open up new horizons for compassionate, free and modern development."If young people are going to maintain their newly found sense of karama and never again be driven to such despair that they choose to emulate Mohamed Bouazizi, development along these lines seems vital.

arabstoday
arabstoday

Name *

E-mail *

Comment Title*

Comment *

: Characters Left

Mandatory *

Terms of use

Publishing Terms: Not to offend the author, or to persons or sanctities or attacking religions or divine self. And stay away from sectarian and racial incitement and insults.

I agree with the Terms of Use

Security Code*

Arab Today, arab today authors at berlin festival talk about \arab spring\ Arab Today, arab today authors at berlin festival talk about \arab spring\

 



Name *

E-mail *

Comment Title*

Comment *

: Characters Left

Mandatory *

Terms of use

Publishing Terms: Not to offend the author, or to persons or sanctities or attacking religions or divine self. And stay away from sectarian and racial incitement and insults.

I agree with the Terms of Use

Security Code*

Arab Today, arab today authors at berlin festival talk about \arab spring\ Arab Today, arab today authors at berlin festival talk about \arab spring\

 



Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Designer Aql Faqih aspires to innovation

GMT 18:41 2017 Friday ,20 October

Designer Aql Faqih aspires to innovation
Arab Today, arab today Italy regions back 'big bang' autonomy

GMT 07:10 2017 Monday ,23 October

Italy regions back 'big bang' autonomy
Arab Today, arab today Etiquette expert underlines importance of gifts

GMT 17:52 2017 Sunday ,03 September

Etiquette expert underlines importance of gifts
Arab Today, arab today Trump: End of Daesh is in sight

GMT 20:29 2017 Monday ,23 October

Trump: End of Daesh is in sight
Arab Today, arab today Maltese demand justice for murdered

GMT 06:08 2017 Monday ,23 October

Maltese demand justice for murdered
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today World's deepest lake in peril

GMT 15:54 2017 Friday ,20 October

World's deepest lake in peril
Arab Today, arab today Ex-French minister Dati wants tough action

GMT 10:54 2017 Thursday ,19 October

Ex-French minister Dati wants tough action
Arab Today, arab today Lost Australia diver swam miles

GMT 19:09 2017 Monday ,23 October

Lost Australia diver swam miles
Arab Today, arab today The history of solar eclipses

GMT 05:16 2017 Sunday ,20 August

The history of solar eclipses
Arab Today, arab today Tesla to build wholly-owned plant

GMT 07:55 2017 Monday ,23 October

Tesla to build wholly-owned plant
Arab Today, arab today EU raids automaker BMW

GMT 11:06 2017 Saturday ,21 October

EU raids automaker BMW
Arab Today, arab today Rogina happy for reactions to “The Flood”

GMT 09:30 2017 Friday ,20 October

Rogina happy for reactions to “The Flood”
Arab Today, arab today Delhi braces for pollution 'airpocalypse'

GMT 16:07 2017 Friday ,20 October

Delhi braces for pollution 'airpocalypse'

GMT 08:15 2017 Thursday ,19 October

Actress Mona Zaki praises husband’s role

GMT 18:15 2017 Monday ,16 October

British actress becomes fifth woman

GMT 16:53 2017 Tuesday ,05 September

Youssra depended on colored foam

GMT 19:09 2017 Thursday ,19 October

Massacre fears spark race

GMT 10:46 2017 Saturday ,05 August

Nanis reveals simple ideas for home renovation

GMT 06:07 2017 Sunday ,22 October

15,000 Under Fives Die

GMT 12:54 2017 Saturday ,21 October

Malaysia Airlines picks new CEO

GMT 17:12 2017 Monday ,07 August

Al-Shawaifi reveals secrets of total solar eclipse

GMT 20:46 2017 Thursday ,19 October

Qualcomm files lawsuits in China to ban iPhones

GMT 16:53 2017 Saturday ,02 September

Mai importance of gifts during Eid Al-Adha
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
 
 Arab Today Facebook,arab today facebook  Arab Today Twitter,arab today twitter Arab Today Rss,arab today rss  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday
بناية النخيل - رأس النبع _ خلف السفارة الفرنسية _بيروت - لبنان
arabstoday, Arabstoday, Arabstoday