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Opening Academic Year Faculty of Arts 2021: Arts Lecture by Abdelkader Benali

On Tuesday 7 September, Abdelkader Benali gave the Arts Lecture to mark the opening of the academic year 2021-2022 of the Faculty of Arts. The title of his lecture is 'You' in the new humanities – why the story about yourself is always about someone else

The Arts Lecture is given alternately in Dutch and in English every year, and this year the language of instruction was Dutch. The texts of Benali's lecture and the opening speech by dean Thony Visser, are now available in both Dutch and English on this webpage .

Abdelkader Benali (1975) is a Moroccan-Dutch writer and programme maker. He moved to Rotterdam when he was four years old, then moved to Leiden during his university studies, and currently lives in Amsterdam. Benali made his debut with the novel Bruiloft aan zee (Wedding by the Sea) (1996), which was awarded the Geertjan Lubberhuizen Prize (1997) and the Prix de Meilleur Premier Roman Etranger (France) in 1999. The book was also nominated for the Libris Literature Prize (1997), which he received in 2003 for his second novel, De langverwachte (The Long-awaited). For De stem van mijn moeder (My Mother’s Voice) (2009), he received the E. du Perron Prize. In 2020, Benali was awarded the Gouden Ganzenveer for his contribution to Dutch literature. His adaptation of Hamlet for the youth theatre Toneelmakerij was awarded the Kaas en Kappen Prize 2020. Abdelkader Benali is currently curating an exhibition of Modern Moroccan Art in the Cobra Museum, which is scheduled to open in spring 2022.

In his work, Benali searches for the meaning of the other, the stranger, migrant or outsider in relation to the community. He writes extensively about this in his essay Racisme aan onszelf uitgelegd (Racism explained to ourselves) (Prometheus, 2020). For him, literature is the space where we can meet each other, free from the pressure and violence of the outside world.

Abdelkader Benali (personal archive)
More information

Admission is free! For more information, please contact the department of Communication, Career & Society (CCS), Faculty of Arts, University of Groningen. Email: info.let

Last modified:06 July 2022 1.50 p.m.
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