Christine Montalbetti’s novel is discussed at Alexandria’s French Cultural Institute

Reham El-Adawi , Tuesday 19 Apr 2022


Italian Cultural Institute

Italy celebrated the 700th anniversary of the passing of Dante Alighieri in 2021. The Italian Institute continues to post videos in Arabic with translations from Dante Alighieri’s masterpiece The Divine Comedy to bring the Arab-speaking public closer to the work of the supreme poet. Videos are directed by Giabluca Barbadori, with the special participation of Ashraf Farouk, Amir Salaheddin, Sherine Hegazy, and Sara El-Mokadem.  





French Cultural Institute 

30 Al Nabi Danial St, Mahatet Misr, Alexandria, Tel 03 3913435/03 3918952

Thurs 21,11am- 4pm: On the occasion of the World Book and Copyright Day celebrated on 23 April, the Media Library provides you with books in all fields and for all tastes to encourage you satisfy your pleasure of reading and enrich your library.
Wed 27, 8.30-9.30pm: The Reading Club with Marianne Roux discusses Christine Montalbetti’s novel What an Existence Is, published by POL in 2021. 

It tells this mysterious evidence of being in the world together at the same time and of living different lives. The novelist-narrator weaves lives through a gallery of characters that we follow for a day. A father, from his window contemplates his neighborhood as his son sails in the Mediterranean. A woman runs away from her love story. An exile settles every morning on a cardboard box at the crossroads of the same district. A groom wanders through the city, after having accompanied his wife to the hospital, and other characters. We discover, with humor and empathy, how each on his own level manages with existence. We talk about love, father-son affection, exile, war, prison, the possibility of reconciliation. And of the epidemic which forced itself into history. Intimate confidences, painful secrets slip in. While the novel writes lives being made and undone.

The novel is available in digital format on Culturethèque

*A version of this article appears in print in the 21 April, 2022 edition of Al-Ahram Weekly.

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