Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Casablanca Book Fair - A Literary Feast

More than 300 writers, poets and researchers from different continents will take part in the 24th edition of the Casablanca International Book and Publishing Fair (SIEL), scheduled for February 8-18

In addition to the Moroccan writers and the delegation that will represent Egypt, guest of honor of this edition, will also be present Palestinians Ghayath Al Madhoun (poet), Ibrahim Nasrallah (novelist), Abderrahmane Bsissou (literary critic), Mohamed Diab Abu Saleh (researcher), Najeh Bekirate (head of manuscripts division at Al-Aqsa Mosque) and Khalil Tafekji (researcher and director of the cartography division of Orient House in Al-Quds).

Also attending will be the Saudi novelist Mohamed Hassan Alouane who was awarded the Booker Prize for the Arab novel for  A Little Death, a fiction depicting the life of the great Andalusian figure of Sufism, Ibn Arabi, from his birth in Spain to his death in Damascus. The novel traces Ibn Arabi's travels from Andalusia to Azerbaijan, via Morocco, Egypt, Hijaz (now Saudi Arabia), Syria, Iraq and Turkey.

Mohamed Hassan Alouane

Other guests include: Omani poet Hassan El Matrouchi, the Iraqi poet living in London Fawzi Karim, the Algerian novelist Kamel Daoud and his compatriot the poet Bouzid Harzallah, the Lebanese Ali Nassar (novelist) and Aissa Makhlouf (poet and literary critic), the Mauritanian researcher Si Ahmed Ouled al-Amir and the Jordanian writer Rachaal-Khatib.

Syria will be represented by Nouri al-Jarrah (poet and director of the Arab Center for Geographic Literature - Exploration of horizons), literary critic Khaldoun Chemâa, novelist Moufid Najm, visual artist Âssim Bacha and novelist Tayssir Khalaf, and By translators Salah Hilal and Amina Masri, film critic Amir al-Omari and writer Walid Alaa Eddine, in addition to the official delegation.

Mohamadine Khawad

From outside the Arab world, the SIEL will welcome the Senegalese poet Amadou Lamine Sall, the Chinese translator Cheng Cheng and the Tuareg poet Mohamadine Khawad (Niger), laureate of the International Poetry Prize the 12th Argana International Poetry Prize in 2017. Khawad was awarded the prize in recognition of the constant concern of his poems for four decades, to preserve the knowledge they feed on and to make nomadism a poetic and intellectual space for the production of meaning and the renewal of vision to oneself and to the world." Born in 1950 in the Aïr region of Niger, the Tuareg poet currently lives in France where he published a series of poems and literary works, almost all translated into several languages, including Nomadic Testament, translated into Arabic by the Poet Adonis.

Guests from France will include the jurist Michel Rousset, novelist Gilbert Sinoué, poet Julien Balaine and the researcher at the National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) in Paris, Catherine Taine-Sheikh.

Other SIEL foreign guests include the Italian poet and translator Giuseppe Conte, German novelist Jenny Erpenbeck, her compatriot author of children's books, Eva Muggenthaler, and the American poet and translator Guy Bennett.

Spain will be represented by writers Vanessa Paloma El Baz, Esther Bendahan, Rosa de Madariaga, Juan José Millás and José María Izquierdo. From Latin America, this year's edition will include the Mexican novelist and poet Myriam Moscona, her compatriot novelist Cristina Pineda, the Argentine novelist Santiago De Luca, the poet and novelist Giovanna Benedetti, her compatriot the novelist Pedro Crenes Castro, both Colombian writers Berta Lucía Estrada and Héctor Abad Faciolince, as well as Chilean researcher Patricio Gonzalez.


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