The Goethe-Institut is Germany’s cultural institute that promotes the German language and encourages cultural exchange.
Every year, the institute honors non-Germans for their work by giving them the Goethe Medal, an official decoration of the Federal Republic of Germany.
This year’s awards will be given to 3 authors who opened a conversation about controversial issues in their communities and among them is a prominent Lebanese author named Emily Nasrallah.
About Emily Nasrallah
Emily Nasrallah is one of the most renowned authors in the Middle East. She writes for adults as well as for children. In fact, her literary work mostly focuses on the village life in the South of Lebanon, women’s rights activism, and the Lebanese civil war.
Born in Al Kfeir, a village in southern Lebanon, Emily Nasrallah used to help her parents in the field. However, young Emily was an avid learner, which led her to become the youngest pupil in her school.
She was always an excellent student, and her passion for literature grew over time thanks to great professors who guided her and helped her with writing.
Also, Emily graduated from the American University of Beirut with a BA in Education and Literature. She wrote many novels and short stories about various topics.
One of her most acclaimed books is the first novel she wrote, Tuyur Aylul (Birds of September) that has received three prestigious literary prizes.
In the book, Emily talks about the migration of the villagers in her town just like the birds in September.
The other awardees for the year 2017 are Urvashi Butalia and Irina Shcherbakova. Butalia is an Indian publisher who advocates women’s rights. She wants the legislators in India to revise the laws regarding rape and dowries.
Shcherbakova is a Russian human rights activist. She is working on raising awareness about the repressive policies in Russia that were created in the Soviet Union.