Writing Studies Seminar: No Friend But The Mountains: Writing From Manus Prison
The Department of Writing Studies’ Writing Hub cordially invites you to our first How I Write seminar for 2019: Behrouz Boochani and Omid Tofighian in conversation with our Student Writing Fellows. Boochani and Tofighian will offer a behind the scenes look into the unconventional composing process they undertook for No Friend But The Mountains: Writing From Manus Prison (Pan Macmillan-Picador 2018). The book has attracted significant media attention and critical acclaim, taking out the 2019 Victorian Prize for Literature, as well as the Non-Fiction award.
We hope you can join us for what promises to be an informative and entertaining afternoon.
Behrouz Boochani graduated from Tarbiat Moallem University and Tarbiat Modares University, both in Tehran; he holds a Masters degree in political science, political geography and geopolitics. He is a Kurdish-Iranian writer, journalist, scholar, cultural advocate and filmmaker. He is currently a political prisoner incarcerated by the Australian government in the Manus Island Regional Processing Centre (Papua New Guinea). Boochani was writer for the Kurdish language magazine Werya; is Honorary Member of PEN International; winner of an Amnesty International Australia 2017 Media Award, the Diaspora Symposium Social Justice Award, the Liberty Victoria 2018 Empty Chair Award, and the Anna Politkovskaya award for journalism; and he is non-resident Visiting Scholar at the Sydney Asia Pacific Migration Centre (SAPMiC), University of Sydney. He publishes regularly with The Guardian, and his writing also features in The Saturday Paper, Huffington Post, New Matilda, The Financial Times and The Sydney Morning Herald. Boochani is also co-director (with Arash Kamali Sarvestani) of the 2017 feature-length film Chauka, Please Tell Us The Time; collaborator on Nazanin Sahamizadeh’s play Manus; and author of No Friend But The Mountains: Writing From Manus Prison (Pan Macmillan-Picador 2018). At the Victorian Premier’s Literary Awards 2019 his book won the Victorian Prize for Literature in addition to the Non-Fiction category.
Omid Tofighian is a lecturer, researcher and community advocate, combining philosophy with interests in citizen media, rhetoric, religion, popular culture, transnationalism, displacement and discrimination. He completed his PhD in philosophy at Leiden University, Netherlands, and graduated with a combined honours degree in philosophy and studies in religion at the University of Sydney. Tofighian has lived variously in Australia where he taught at different universities; the United Arab Emirates where he taught at Abu Dhabi University; Belgium where he was a visiting scholar at K.U. Leuven; Netherlands for his PhD; and intermittent periods in Iran for research. His current roles include Assistant Professor of Philosophy, American University in Cairo; Honorary Research Associate for the Department of Philosophy, University of Sydney; faculty at Iran Academia; and campaign manager for Why Is My Curriculum White? – Australasia. He contributes to community arts and cultural projects and works with refugees, migrants and youth. He has published numerous book chapters and journal articles, is author of Myth and Philosophy in Platonic Dialogues (Palgrave Macmillan 2016) and translator of Behhouz Boochani’s book No Friend But The Mountains: Writing From Manus Prison (Pan Macmillan-Picador 2018).
Woolley Common Room
John Woolley Building A20
The University of Sydney
Camperdown NSW 2006
Dr Tofighian and Behrouz will also appear in this year’s Sydney Writers Festival. Click here to find out more about those sessions.