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Arab-French Relations Topic for Romano at Free Library

Professor of Philosophy and Humanities Carlin Romano will discuss troubled Arab-French relations with Algerian novelist and journalist Kamel Daoud.

In the wake of last Friday’s shocking terrorist attacks in Paris, Romano will conduct an on-stage conversation on Wednesday, Nov. 18th, at the Free Library of Philadelphia, with courageous Algerian novelist and journalist Kamel Daoud, who writes in French for Quotidien d’Oran of Algeria, and also contributes a weekly column to the Parisian news magazine Le Point.  

The New Yorker called Daoud’s debut novel, The Meursault Investigation (Other Press, 2015), a “tour-de force reimagining” of Albert Camus’s classic existentialist novel, The Stranger (1942). The story is told from the point of view of the brother of the nameless Arab killed by Meursault, the anti-hero of Camus’s  novel. The Meursault Investigation won France’s Prix Francois Mauriac and Prix des Conq-Continents de la francophonie. Foreign rights to the novel have been sold in 20 countries, and a feature film based on it is slated to be released in 2017.

The event takes place at 7:30 p.m. in the auditorium of the Main Branch of the Free Library of Philadelphia, 1901 Vine Street. It is free and open to the public (no tickets or reservations required). The on-stage conversation is the second of two that Romano, critic-at-large of The Chronicle of Higher Education and former longtime literary critic of The Philadelphia Inquirer, has conducted this fall as part of the Free Library’s “Author Events” series. The first, with Turkish Nobel-Prize -winning novelist Orhan Pamuk, took place in October. 

Romano, who is teaching a seminar on existentialism this term, says that Ursinus students interested in attending the event are welcome and should email him.