Abdelaziz Errachidi on Writing and the Desert

Sousan Hammad always asks when the Beirut39-ers (a group of 39 up-and-coming Arab writers under 40) began writing. Moroccan novelist and short-story writer Abdelaziz Errachidi had one of the more interesting answers:

I always say there are two types of people: one that lives life, and one that wonders about it then turns it into art or writes it. I am of the second kind of people because I started writing too early. I write on a daily basis regardless of the possibility of publishing. Writing, sometimes, is a practice of oblivion. Sometimes it is an exercise to remember.

On the language (and landscapes) that have influenced his writing:

During my childhood, I read the Arabian Nights and the old Arabian prose, and, of course, the Holy Quran. … That refined old language has affected my writings. I later read the literature of Latin America and became fascinated with the beauty of realism. I felt a close resemblance between us and the reality of Latin America: similar questions, and the same strange environment. Since I belong to the desert, the first thing I was drawn to was the desert. I tried to write about it and to introduce it since it was an experience rarely brought into the spotlight here in Morocco.

And, about his magical-realistic novel Bedouin on the Edge:

The novel Bedouin on the Edge was written in that same influence. The Bedouin who was abandoned by the villagers would soon become part of the village- as well as part of the desert- after news about child kidnappers dispersed. He was divided between his emotions and body. He was restless. Is this not the situation of a Bedouin throughout history? Is this not how we all are?

According to his bio here, Errachidi has written a number of books and stories. I could find none of his work translated into English.

1 Comment

  1. slt tt le monde j ss une ancienne collègue de abdelaziz errachidi à CFI Eljadida et j ss fière d avoir eu l occasion de le connaiter

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