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In conversation with Khalid Lyamlahy: Evocation d’un mémorial à Vénise

Event information>

17:30 – 19:30

Institute in Paris

Join us for a conversation with Khalid Lyamlahy, a specialist of Francophone North African literature and Assistant Professor in French at the University of Chicago, for a discussion about his latest novel ‘Evocation d'un mémorial à Venise' (Présence Africaine Édition, 2023). The novel has been shortlisted for the Prix des 5 continents 2024. 

In conversation with Khalid Lyamlahy: Evocation d’un mémorial à Vénise

Location: Institute in Paris 

One afternoon in January 2017, a young Gambian refugee throws himself into Venice's Grand Canal, drowning amidst the gazes and insults of onlookers. His name is Pateh, and he is twenty-two years old. A young writer, haunted by this tragedy, follows in his footsteps, attempting to piece together the sequence of events and articulate his shock and indignation. In a fragmentary narrative intertwining fiction and reality, the narrator explores news websites, searches for clues in the press, and unveils truths buried in the pages of history and literature. Through a quest filled with surprises and emotions, additional stories of migration and displacement become interwoven, retrieving the experiences of other forgotten or invisibilised African youths. From the Africa of roots and ruptures to the Venice of myths and illusions, the writing is both poetic and empathetic: it denounces the hatred of the other and outlines a literary memorial for human dignity.

Join us for a conversation with Khalid Lyamlahy about narratives of migration and the poetic memorialization of those denied commemoration through a physical edifice.