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It's up to us to give the stage to 'non-humans'

Nisrine Mbarki - foto Bart Grietens
Nisrine Mbarki - foto Bart Grietens

It has always amazed me how we, humans, act and subject everything on earth to our will," says Nisrine Mbarki. She made the program #BackToEarth: Tout-monde for the online Winternachten festival. Join the live stream Saturday evening 16 January, and read here why Nisrine gives a voice to all that lives around mankind.

"The image we have of our world and create is a purely human image, a human-centric image. What we know, how we think and act we do on the basis of our humanity. You could say that this is logical but it has always surprised me how we, humans, act and subject everything on earth to our will. We behave as if we were gods on earth and in our solar system.', states Nisrine Mbarki, author, poet and curator of the Winternachten festival-programme #BackToEarth: Tout-monde.

"A few years ago I learned that, from our Eurocentric view of mankind, we have even manipulated the geographical proportions of the continents. That touched me deeply, that is how shocking our image is. To start with, we are at the center of the earth, which makes us think because we, European people, think we are the center of the earth.

Mankind is a part of the earth, a part of nature and not the other way around. It is therefore up to us, our responsibility to give 'non-humans' a voice and a stage, even if a slightly superior attitude seems to be hidden in this. I would rather see it this way that we as human beings are incapable of understanding non-humans and everything else living on earth, and that we need a language to understand them.

I make a humble attempt to take a small step towards everything else living around us and try to represent a voice through literature. The Caribbean philosopher Édouard Glissant called the concept of the world as a whole, the complete world 'tout-monde' and this theory inspires me.

The expression of marginalized voices is a recurring movement in history, and I like to join in by giving a voice to non-humans, albeit from our limitation as human beings. For me it is necessary that we revise ourselves, as part of the whole."

Online Winternachten festival
#BackToEarth: Tout-monde
Featuring authors Sulaiman Addonia en Annemarie Estor (Belgium), Amahl Raphael Khouri (Egypt) en Vamba Sherif, Chris Keulemans (moderator) and singer-songwriter Shishani.
Live stream Saturday 16 January 2021, 20:30-21:45 hours, English spoken.
Tickets vanaf 5 euro.

Posted on: Wednesday 6 January 2021