The conference not only celebrates Darwish’s oeuvre and its interaction with its modern literary, intellectual, and political reality, but also explores its global literary impact. It examines the tensions that shaped Darwish’s language and kept fluctuating – in the ear of its listener, as it once fluctuated in the throat of its poet – between meaning and nothingness, tragedy and lyricism, the individual and the collective, and also, between Palestinian particularity and universal humanity. The conference also addresses Darwish’s creativity as a symbolic, patriotic, Arab and national revolutionary figure, and as a basic reference for modernist poetry in general and for committed poetry in particular. Hence, the conference examines how Mahmoud Darwish’s legacy has been employed, represented, and interpreted, in the past and in the present. Attention is turned as well to criticism of the systematic employment of Darwish, his works, and his patriarchal framing, which has led to the marginalization and silencing of other poetical and literary genres, as a drift away from commitment to political action.

Organised by Qattan Foundation in partnership with Darwish Chair Among others.