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Sultan Al Qasimi launches ‘Literary Fund’ to support literati financially

His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, stressed the need to respect the word highlighting the importance of cohesion among the educated, pointing out the importance of the precise translation so that Arabic literature can be taken to the world by adhering to the true culture and creativity. He said that his writings in history, geography and literature came to present lessons and advice.

This came during His Highness’ meeting with the participants in the 27th Conference of the General Union of Arab Writers and the Emirates Writers Union, at Dr. Sultan Al Qasimi Centre for Gulf Studies (Al Darah) on Tuesday.

Welcoming his guests, His Highness said that Al Darah is "part of my home, where we transferred what is in the house to this house, and we are still moving to this day."   

He underlined the role of the intelligentsia and literati  in taking interest in culture and literature, saying, Dr. Habib Al Sayegh, in his speech, said that I am “the educated  ruler”, I say “an educated who rules”, and therefore we call upon you all because you are still holding on the embers in a strange time. He added “We seek and work in many areas of interest to intellectuals such as poetry, theatre and cinema, and we would like all these things to unite the Arabs. But, we speak through culture, and we hope that our message is true to others, whether in the East or in the West. Therefore, our recommendation is to walk together. "     

Highlighting the importance of respecting the word and literature, His Highness noted that many writers have gone unreasoned and to enormity and we are trying to bring them back to the right track though it may be difficult.   

Talking about his writings and methods of documentation, His Highness said that as a writer he wanted to criticise the Arabs by rendering them advice in good faith without any vilification.     

Reiterating the important standing of literary people and writers, His Highness said that the word is mightier than the weapon, because, once said, it is strong and honest as it is not paid. He urged writers to simulate the older authors, as it takes a lot of effort to become a writer.     

He hoped that today’s writings are intended to be a real literature that matches world literature, and, without any doubt, this galaxy of writers is not unable to do so.   

As for the importance of literary translation and the need to take care of it, His Highness said that the translator should be a writer to produce accurate and easily comprehended literature, an approach we are adopting now as it is evident in the Western translations of Naguib Mahfouz's books which were translated in a smart and literary way.  

His Highness continued to highlight the important role of translation and translators. In this context, he announced an initiative which he presents to the Union of Arab Writers for the translation of a number of the Union’s literary publications and communicate it to the West in an easy and advanced method.   

During his speech, His Highness announced the establishment of the Literary Fund under the auspices of the Union of Arab Writers to play a role in supporting and sponsoring writers financially.     

His Highness also focused on the special attention and care he attaches to the African countries announcing that he has already launched a special programme with South Sudan to teach Arabic and will communicate with all  African countries.