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Amin Maalouf

  • French author
  • Born February 25, 1949

Amin Maalouf (French: [maluf]; Arabic: أمين معلوف‎; born 25 February 1949) is an award-winning Lebanese-born French author who has lived in France since 1976. Although his native language is Arabic, he writes in French, and his works have been translated into over 40 languages. He received the Prix Goncourt in 1993 for his novel The Rock of Tanios as well as the 2010 Prince of Asturias Award for Literature. He is a member of the Académie française.


You can't say history teaches us this or that; it gives us more questions than answers, and many answers to every question.




It's the relationship I have with the world: always trying to escape from reality. I'm a daydreamer; I don't feel in harmony with my epoch or the societies I live in.




I come from no country, from no city, no tribe. I am the son of the road... all tongues and all prayers belong to me. But I belong to none of them.




I have the profoundest respect for people who behave in a generous way because of religion. But I come from a country where the misuse of religion has had catastrophic consequences. One must judge people not by what faith they proclaim but by what they do.




The fact of simultaneously being Christian and having as my mother tongue Arabic, the holy language of Islam, is one of the basic paradoxes that have shaped my identity.




During my youth, the idea of moving from Lebanon was unthinkable. Then I began to realise I might have to go, like my grandfather, uncles and others who left for America, Egypt, Australia, Cuba.



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