Join multiple award-winning internationally acclaimed writers Mourid Barghouti and Marcello Di Cintio for a moving and insightful discussion on exile, displacement, belonging and political turmoil. A truly one-of-a-kind event featuring a voice of a generation.
The Palestinian poet Mourid Barghouti left his country in 1966, aged twenty-two, to return to university in Cairo. A year later came the Six Day War and Barghouti, like many Palestinians living abroad, was denied entry into his homeland. Thirty years later, he was finally allowed to visit Ramallah, the city he had grown up in. A rickety wooden bridge over a dried-up river connects the West Bank to Jordan. It is the very same bridge Barghouti had crossed little knowing that he would not be able to return. I Saw Ramallah, his extraordinarily beautiful account of homecoming, begins at this crossing, filled with its ironies and heartaches. In half bemusement, half joy, Barghouti journeys through Ramallah, keenly aware that the city he had left barely resembles the present-day city scarred by the Occupation - and he discovers in this displacement, that the events of 1967 have made him permanently homeless.
Marcello Di Cintio is an award-winning Canadian writer who has lived in West Africa, North Africa, India and the Middle East. He is the author of Harmattan: Wind across West Africa, Poets, Pahlevans: A Journey into the Heart of Iran and Walls: Travels Along the Barricades, which won the City of Calgary W. O. Mitchell Book Prize and the Wilfred Eggleston Prize for Non-Fiction, and was also named as one of The Globe and Mail‘s top 100 books of 2012. He is a former writer in residence with the Calgary Distinguished Writers Program and the Palestine Writing Workshop, and an instructor at the 2015 Iceland Writers Workshop.