Sari Alhassanat [Palestine]


What More Is There in Solitude But Myself | poem, video, 2018

The Oliwa Park has undoubtedly served as an inspiration for a number of artists, not just Rainer Maria Rilke and Lou Andreas-Salomé. In the summer of 2018, Sari Alhassanat, a young poet from the Gaza Strip, also walked down the park alleys. Sari came to Gdańsk on a year-long creative residence organized in cooperation with the international ICORN network. The network of European and American cities was established in 2005 to help writers and artists who cannot freely live and create in their homeland because of harassment. One of its initiators was Salman Rushdie, author of the famous Satanic Verses, whose publication provoked an outburst of protests throughout the Islamic world and led to the author being placed under a fatwa. Owing to the repression he faced in his own country, Sari was looking for shelter that would grant him suitable conditions to work freely. This he found in Gdańsk, where he came in the summer of 2018 and which has since become the background of his poems. It is worth nothing that Arabic countries attach great weight to literary culture. Arabic writers usually enjoy a high social status and their works are widely commented upon. All Arabic magazines have at least one page dedicated to literature.

Especially for NARRACJE, Sari wrote a poem about the solitude of living away from his homeland. Festival guests will have an opportunity to see a video recording of Alhassanat reading his poem. The screening will be held near the Plague House, which had been called the Gateway House before the plague, as its walls led to the old part of Oliwa.

locationdoorway of the Plague House (Dom Zarazy), Stary Rynek Oliwski 16a


Sari Alhassanat (b. 1990) is a poet and human rights activist from Jabalia, the largest refugee camp in the northern part of the Gaza Strip. Alhassanat writes poems and articles about corruption, terrorism, human rights and youth unemployment in the Gaza Strip. His activity is focused on the violation of children’s rights and the right to education. He has worked as a volunteer for various NGOs. At present, he is on an ICORN residency in Gdańsk.

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