Finding rest in your mother language

BARKOUKI, Nisrin Maktabi (2016) Finding rest in your mother language. Paper presented at: IFLA WLIC 2016 – Columbus, OH – Connections. Collaboration. Community in Session 103 - Public Libraries with Library Services to Multicultural Populations and Columbus Metropolitan Library.

Bookmark or cite this item: http://library.ifla.org/id/eprint/1371
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Language: English (Original)
Available under licence Creative Commons Attribution.

Abstract

Finding rest in your mother language

Pictures of men, women and children in their pursuit of a better life across the Mediterranean, stuffed in wooden boats, have been almost daily news the last couple of years. But we really didn’t understand the true meaning of these news, until the body of a little 4 year old boy was washed onto one of the shores in Turkey. The photograph of little Aylan Kurdi in his blue shorts and red shirt changed the tone and approach in many countries to the migrant crisis that we have been witnessing the last 5 years. One of these countries that experienced a radical change almost overnight in the public opinion was Norway. Norway is a small country in Scandinavia with a long story of migration and that holds high the values of human rights and dignity, especially when it comes to children – the next generation of tax-payers. But the wave of migrants that hit the country in fall 2015 was rather unseen and pushed all the official institutions to the limit. Even The Multilingual Library in Oslo, a small national institution within the Oslo Public Library felt the heat when suddenly 8000 newcomers arrived to the country in a two months period of time. Because when you get your entire life and future put on hold, maybe for a week, for a month or for a year and you have lost everything you’ve possessed and everything you did hold dearly, what can mean more than finding rest in what you still carry with you: your past, your identity: your mother language?

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