“I have to go through the Other to get to myself.” -Adunis, Charlie Rose interview 03/10/08

“One can feel, at least a poet can feel, an internal exile with his own language.” “Opening up a new horizon for thoughts and poetry…constant exile. A person who creates is always in exile, so to speak.” “Death is not the problem, life is the problem, how to live.” “I am living my death every day.” 

Charlie Rose is a complete idiot. He tries to say that poetry is when a poet expresses what other people have in their hearts. Adonis says, “well thats a common thought…” “I write to see the world better… I hope to help my readers to live better and to see the world.”  

“Arabs are an integral part of the West. The West is no longer the Other, the stranger… it lives in us. We must separate religion from politics.” “All religions have a unidimensional version of the truth” “Lebanon is different… it is a crossroads.” “We reject the creative principle of modernity.”

from the comments: 

Charles Borland  10/07/2008 01:23 AM

Modernity was introduced into the Middle East engulfed within the imperial trappings and folds of colonialism’s robes. Thus, it is almost impossible for those trapped by recent Middle Eastern history to separate their hatred/ambivalence for the West with their hatred/ambivalence for modernity. And so a harsh resistance is perpetuated. Until modernity is seen as distinct from the West, the cycle will continue. Until those in the Middle East see modernity as part of the human sum and not simply or uniquely ‘Western’, the cycle will continue (after all, we don’t call it Arabic Algebra, we simply call it Algebra – same goes for modernity). And until the West peers out from behind its supercilious wall of enlightened rationalism the cycle will continue.