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Tuesday, 23 August, 2011, 3:18 ( 1:18 GMT )
Libyan Novelist Al-Koni Wins Arab Novel Award
20/12/2010 20:51:00
Photo: Libyan novelist Ibrahim al-Koni

Libyan novelist Ibrahim al-Koni received in Cairo the Arab Novel Award and dedicated the value of the prize to the children of the Tuareg tribes in Niger and Mali.

At the closing ceremony of the fifth round of the Cairo Novel Conference, prominent Libyan author Ibrahim al-Koni was chosen from 23 competitors to receive the Arab Novel Award, whose value is 100,000 Egyptian pounds ($18,000).

"Koni was chosen for his ability to breathe life into the desert on the human, natural, spiritual, and mythological levels," said Syrian critic Sobhi Hadeedi, who headed the jury.

The committee in charge of choosing the winner praised Koni's ability to utilize folklore, oral tradition, death rituals, and aspects of everyday life in order to create a literary work.

"He creates his own individual anthropology," added the committee statement.

Upon receiving the prize from Egyptian Minister of Culture Farouk Hosni, Koni announced that he wants to donate the money to the children of the Tuareg, the tribes that inhabit the desert interior of North Africa and from which he also hails.

Koni specified that he wanted the Tuareg children in Niger and Mali to be the beneficiaries of his award.

Ibrahim al-Koni, born in 1948 in the desert town of Ghadames in the Fezzan region in southwestern Libya, studied comparative literature at the Russian Maxim Gorky Literature Institute and worked as a journalist in Warsaw and Moscow.

He wrote all his books in Arabic, which he learnt when he was twelve, and his novels were translated into 35 languages.

Koni is the recipient of numerous awards, on top of which is the Swiss State Award for his novel Bleeding of the Stone in 1995, the Libyan State Award for all his work in 1996, and the Japanese Translation Committee Award for his novel Gold Dust in 1997.

He also received the French Order for Literature and Arts in 2006 and the Sheikh Zayyed Book Award in 2007.

A number of writers criticized the organization of the conference and its organizers for excluding the younger generation writers as well as not consulting with the stakeholders of such an event.(alarbiya)
This article has ( 1 ) Comment(s)
Name: dr. vijay shankar prasad
Date: 30/12/2010 18:42:37
Really, Libya is a fertile land for literature. The students os literature in libyan universities will definitely take inspiration to study and create literature of their own. congratulations!
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