Novelist Amara Lakhous on Embracing Diversity through the Immigrant Experience
Amara Lakhous, award-winning author of novels that explore the immigrant experience in contemporary Italy, visited UD in Spring 2015. Dr. Lakhous spoke to students in Professor Meredith Ray’s “Italian Detective Fiction and Film” course, about his novel, Clash of Civilizations Over an Elevator in Piazza Vittorio and about his own experiences as a refugee. Dr. Lakhous also gave a public lecture on the theme of “Diversity and Suspicion in a Global World,” co-sponsored by the Center for Global and Area Studies, the University Faculty Senate Committee On Cultural Activities and Public Events, and the English Department. In this lecture he focused on his own experience coming to Italy in 1995 as an Algerian refugee, before eventually becoming an Italian citizen and moving, most recently, to New York City. He emphasized the enormous importance of learning new languages and experiencing new cultures and stressed how such study leads to greater understanding, empathy, and compassion among people in today’s global society. Our students studying languages were impressed to hear Dr. Lakhous describe how he learned to master Italian, French, and English in addition to his native Arabic and Berber dialect, and to learn about his multi-lingual writing practice (he publishes in Arabic, Italian, and English). Most of all, students were energized and encouraged by Dr. Lakhous’ positive, energetic attitude and his embrace of new languages and cultures as a way to connect with the “Other.”
This entry was posted in Invited Lectures, Polyglot, Special Events and tagged Fall 2015 Polyglot, Front Page Feature, Italian.