February 5, 2018
Book signing and discussion with the author
From 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm
Cairo International Book Fair
Al Arabi Publishing and Distributing and Pro Helvetia Cairo are inviting you to attend the Swiss novel Elefanten im Garten discussion and book signing with the author Meral Kureyshi in Cairo International Book fair 2018
The novel was listed in Swiss Book Prize in 2016 and won Canton Bern Prize in the same year.
The novel is a semi-biography of the author. She emigrated with her family from Prizren to Switzerland to escape the risk of ethnically motivated violence. But it collides with the Swiss socially civilized society, but it still has a deep-rooted racism that the author suffers and can not adapt to this treatment she received as a refugee, a treatment that is respectful but racially. The novel moves among the memories of the past in Prizren and present in Switzerland. Her story begins with her going to her native country in Prizren, returning from Switzerland to visit the grave of her deceased father and reading Surat Yassin. And then tell the suffering of its people of unity and grief, especially after the transition to a new state of a new culture. With every German word they heard, the dimension and longing for the old identity grew. Sometimes the young narrator also recalls her childhood at Prizren. It moves between two languages, two different cultures. She can not decide which one to choose. It is a fascinating novel of the ethnic cleansing and racism inherent in some civilized societies, of the fate of families after asylum and migration, of origin, identity, alienation, loss and determination, but also of new beginnings. The language is poetic, quiet, suited to her family’s feeling.
Miral Qureshi was born in 1983 in Prizren, a former Yugoslavia and now Serbia. She moved to Switzerland with her 10-year-old family and has lived in Bern since 1992. She completed her studies at the Swiss Literature Institute, and later joined many poetry workshops, many of which she founded for children because of her passion for poetic language. The novel was published in 2015.