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Somali-Italian novelist and poet, Ubah Cristina Ali Farah, will discuss her experiences of growing up in Mogadishu and how this has come to influence her writings. She will read from her latest novel Madre Piccola (Little Mother) and discuss her work with Somali British poet, Elmi Ali.
Ubah Cristina Ali Farah was born in Verona of a Somali father and an Italian mother. She grew up in Mogadishu but fled at the outbreak of the civil war. She writes for The Black Blog of Vogue Italia and for the magazine Internazionale. She has published stories and poems in several anthologies and in 2006 she won the Lingua Madre National Literary Prize. Madre Piccola is her first novel, in 2008 the novel was awarded the Vittorini Literary Award and was then translated into Dutch and English in 2011. Her second novel Il Comandante del Fiume will be forthcoming in Spring 2014.
Elmi Ali is a writer/performer and facilitator. He is part of the prestigious Young Identity poetry collective, Manchester, and the Inna Voice Ensemble. He writes poetry, short stories and drama. His work has appeared in publications such as the Poetry Review and Scarf Magazine of which he is an Associate Editor. Elmi is currently working on his first collection of poetry scheduled for autumn 2014.