SONGSOPTOK: Do you think literature or poetry is really essential in our life? If so why?
NAJET ADOUANI: Yes, Literature is essential because we can’t build a democratic free country without educated conscious people that is why the dictators when they want to dominate people they start by killing culture and  marginalizing the writers and the artists who menace   their bestiality and their dictatorship by the power of their words and their art… And poetry is the mother of all the other kinds of art, we can find the poetic image in a theatre drama, in the Cinema, in the novel and in painting art, this beside the noble existence of poetry in the soul and the mind of humanity, I can’t imagine life without poetry because poetry is the heart of life and the creator of her beauty, that is why poetry will exist for ever despite the bitterness of the chocking realities shaking the trust of people and push them far away from their  feelings and drop them in the lap of noise and hysteria . I think that our world needs more poetry and more creation to survive his conscience to kill violence and realize peace.

SONGSOPTOK: How does it relate to the general history of mankind?

NAJET ADOUANI: As I said in the first paragraph, poetry is the conscience of the humanity and the heart of life, and despite difference and progress of the writing styles and the images poetry has still the same role and the same message. Poetry was born on Gods tongues on the    Olympian summit and in the Odyssey of Humorous and exploded in the Arab poets of the desert hearts  as Kays the hero of the majnoun of the French poet Aragon, it may the role of nowadays poetry changed and the image wore her time face but the  roots are the same and they will nest in the soul and the mind of our existence till the last breath of the earth despite difference of languages and the death of nature around people and wars, the new images of the new poetry, the poetry which tries to create the wished image hidden behind that ugly face was exploded by the poet in his poem the moment of creation.

SONGSOPTOK: Our readers would like to know your own personal experience regarding the importance of literature and poetry in your life.
NAJET ADOUANI: It is hard to resume a long experience of 40 years in a short paragraph but I try to introduce myself in some lines. As I said in one of my poems that I am the twins of my poem “ I am the daughter of a mother Doesn’t know that I came to this world pregnant..
That poetry raped all my virginities “I started writing classic rhythmic poems at the age of eight years old, and some of my poems one year later won 3prices and composed by famous songs composer in Tunisia and that opened for me the doors of fame and media. At the age of 14 I left that romantic innocent faze filled of flowers and butterflies  to an ironic one perfumed of the poor’s screams, the workers sweat, the tears of the hungry children and the sad hymns of the mothers crying the loss of sons, I engaged myself and my pen in defending  human  rights and freedom. The poetess inside me is stronger than the other writing kinds despite that I broke the borders and I wrote the short story, the operetta, the novel, the literary critic, some theatre plays and children stories.  To be a poetess in a masculine society dominating woman and chaining her by religion and traditions dictatorships was not easy and my suffering started early in the house of a family where the father was the master who could limit my freedom but that made me stronger and gave me the power to fight and to win and gave my pen the force and the experience. Second space was the society where I had to demolish the walls and break my chains and close my ears and climb the mountain of pain till the top, the third space was the prison of the system where they tried to close my mouth and break my pen using all the violence kinds, it was hard and heavy years filled of pain and tears but I am still here kindling my words in the heart of the life and exploding darkness by millions of voices live inside me.

SONGSOPTOK: Who were your favorite writers during the early period of your life? And how they have paved your early routes in literature?
NAJET ADOUANI: When I was child, my favorites were Khalil Gibran, Aboulkacem Chabbi and Rambo,  when I reached 14,I broke all my chains and I changed my writing style looking for my own identity and I realized that quickly.

SONGSOPTOK: Now coming back to the present time, do you think people in general actually bother about literature in general?  Do you think this consumerist world is turning the average man away from serious literature?
NAJET ADOUANI: People can’t live without literature even when they see it differently and give it a new filthy faces make it lose its real meaning but this will not continue for long, I think after what is happening now in the world: the wars, the violence, the bestiality and the loss caused by crazy desires of domination, the new generation will go back to the literature and search how to survive its roots. I think it is the responsibility of creators too who should not give up and continue fighting to defend art and creation.

SONGSOPTOK: Now if we try to understand the tradition and modernism, do you think literature can play a pivotal role in it?  If so, how?
NAJET ADOUANI: The problem is not between Modernism and tradition now, we are facing another danger stronger and harder, the domination of religions in some countries which more dangerous for literature and for artists and creators. Before the Arab spring, the conflict was between tradition and modernism and that could bother but had never menaced the literature of death,  and in the most of times that powered it and realized the concurrence between creators to do the better, it didn’t matter if they were traditional or modern, now both of them are menaced of death because the religions terrorism refuses dialogue  and not recognize all kinds of literature  and this is not menacing  only some countries or a community, because the terrorism started to spread in all the world where can kill and ravage easily if we share the world between  sheep  and wolves and in the jungle there is no modernism while the religion is the powerful father who supports the tradition.

SONGSOPTOK:  Again how can an individual writer relates himself or herself with the tradition and modernism?
NAJET ADOUANI:  I think that is a choice, even if we live in a society of tradition and taboos, we can break the cord of the traditional when we open our wings and fly far of it. I refused the traditions since my childhood and I refuse to live in the past, in the Barnuss of my grandfather but I am not for all kinds of modernism because this word holds different meanings, each one of them opens a different door takes to a different way. I am for modernism when it breaks borders and adds up to my experience in life and in creation and I am against modernism when it demolishes nature and filths souls and minds and kills beauty.

SONG SOPTOK:  Do you think society as a whole, is the key factor in shaping you up as a poet, or your poetry altogether?
NAJET ADOUANI: Society is the big house where we live our lives and learn how to walk to ourselves stronger or weaker and sometimes we live in its prison till the end. I lived in a masculine traditional society but I broke my chains and I chose my way far and free because I want to be me and my existence is related to my voice and my pen, we are one in the moment of creation and we become folks when my words fly to reach my readers in all the world.

SONGSOPTOK: Coming to the present time, how does politics in general influence you in your writings?
NAJET ADOUANI: I am a writer and I refuse to be a politician because I am fighting their domination and their bestiality and my words are the voices of the dominated people, the poor and the marginalized, the silent people who have no voices despite this I am against giving politic the opportunity of smashing the writing techniques or ravaging the poem beauty. We can hold our pens against violence and dictatorship without killing the soul of the real poetry in our poems, for me the poem dies outside the image, when I say image I don’t mean the innocent  barren ones, I mean those which burst like bombs when the eyes of the reader touch them.

SONGSOPTOK: Are you  feminist? Can literature play any decisive role in feminism at all?
NAJET ADOUANI: Yes I am,  because  I lived and I still do in a masculine society dominate the woman and use all kinds of violence against her, the situation became more complicated after what called Arab spring,  and now woman is menaced to lose all her rights and come back to the dark time. But woman is a part of the dominated humanity body and my pen is the voice of all that body. Literature can free the feminine weak voice and transforms it to a thunder when the woman knows how to use it as a weapon against violence and domination. If I am not a poetess and a writer I couldn’t have the courage to fight or to defend my voice and the voices of the others.

SONGSOPTOK: Do you believe that all writers are by and large the product of  their nationality and  is it an incentive or an obstacle for becoming a truly international writer?
NAJET ADOUANI: I am against borders and limits, I don’t write for a community or a country, I write for the person everywhere outside places and times, and my readers are everywhere too but the problem is always translation and printing houses and visa which makes many writers use the internet and try to spread their texts by publishing in some sits like Face book and others.

SONGSOPTOK: What role can literature play to make our lives better on a day to day basis?
NAJET ADOUANI: Literature can play a positive role and makes our lives better when we know how to use it correctly and perfectly. The reader looks for the good book which offers him pleasure and benefit and the writer looks for the reader and for new ways to reach that reader everywhere in this world…Literature can break distances and open borders between countries and relate between nations.

[Najet Adouani, a Tunisian writer, comes from the south of Tunisia. She studied journalism and is member of the Tunisian writers union since 1982. She is the author of 6 Arabic poetry books:
" In every wound a lily - Tunis 1982...I fly by a green wing – Beirut 1984..Celestial roots - Beirut 1986...The cool of steel's soul - Tunis 1994...Fun black - Tunis 2006...Who stole my shadow - Tunis 2010".
She won the feminine poetry-price 2010.
She has also written a collection of stories entitled: "Mirrors of one body - Tunis 1997"
More than 15 manuscripts between poetry and prose are waiting to be published. She has participated in many Arabic and international poetry festivals. Her poems have been translated into French, English, German and Spanish.
Always ready to support just human causes in the world, she writes to spread her wings far, in order to draw a dream in the eyes of the readers of her books.]




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