Chaza Charafeddine


Chaza Charafeddine

Born in 1964 in Tyre, Lebanon, Chaza Charafeddine attended a Catholic girl’s school in Beirut and studied art and theater, among other subjects, in Switzerland and Germany. Chaza Charafeddine speaks four languages; her texts have been published in numerous anthologies and journals; her installations and pictures are represented by several Lebanese and European galleries. She now lives in Beirut again. About her multiculturality, she says: “I have known Lebanon in times of peace and prosperity as well as in times of civil war and occupation by foreign forces. I first experienced Germany as a divided country and then as a united one. And in Switzerland, as Lebanese, I was pushed above all by the question: why is that country called the ‘Switzerland of the Middle East’? Apart from the snow-covered peaks behind a water landscape, I could find no other resemblance between the two countries.”

In her book Beirut für wilde Mädchen (Beirut for Wild Girls), a literary autobiography and a global Arabic story, she portrays from the point of view of someone “born as just a girl” a childhood and youth in the cultural and religious melting pot of Lebanon with all the upheavals and radicalizations of the 1970s. “In exile” in Europe, she finds a homeland in the Arabic language. And she also pays a keen, ironic tribute to German—in the second half of the book—as an adult thirsting for freedom in the midst of a traumatizing and conscientious culturally productive society.

Beirut für wilde Mädchen. Biografischer Roman in zwei Teilen. Aus dem Arabischen von Günther Orth, mit einem Nachwort von Stefan Weidner. Edition Converso 2021
Together with Karolina Golimowska: Jetzt bin ich also Deutsch – Unter dem Himmel von Berlin. Arabisch/Deutsch. Aus dem Arabischen von Usama Al Shamani. Falschrum Books 2021


28th Leukerbad International Literary Festival: 6.21.–23.2024