Algeria launches the Amazigh Culture Prize |

ORAN, Algeria – The High Commission for Tamazight (HCA) in Algeria has launched the President’s Prize for Amazigh Literature and Language, with the aim of supporting Amazigh culture after years of marginalization.

The secretary general of the HCA, El Hachemi Assad, announced on Saturday in Oran that the competition would start next week after the selection of the members of the jury.

“An independent jury will be installed next week,” Assad said in an opening speech at the conference, which is organized by the HCA in partnership with the Numidia association and the Center for Research in Social and Cultural Anthropology of Oran .

The prize is considered a “landmark project to strengthen national culture, because it aims to promote literary and intellectual achievements in all their linguistic diversities in Algeria,” he told the Algerian press agency (APS) .

The prize will include four axes: linguistics, literature written and translated into Amazigh, research in the field of Amazigh intangible cultural heritage and scientific, technological and digital research.

<a class=People stroll through a decorated street in Sahel, a village near Tiizi Ouzou, east of Algiers, ahead of the Yennayer, or Amazigh New Year, celebrations last January. (PA)” data-entity-type=”file” data-entity-uuid=”2151b9b4-d8fb-4113-ae18-e02a29950915″ src=”https://thearabweekly.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/2_22.jpg”/>
People stroll through a decorated street in Sahel, a village near Tiizi Ouzou, east of Algiers, ahead of the Yennayer, or Amazigh New Year, celebrations last January. (PA)

El Hachemi Assad is a well-known name in Amazigh and Algerian society due to his efforts, through the High Commission for Tamazight, to strengthen Amazigh culture in all areas. He reaffirmed last April the HCA’s commitment to work to advance Amazigh education in the country’s education and communication systems by supporting the process of its generalization which began in 1995.

He repeatedly stressed the “need to intensify efforts for the generalization of the Amazigh language and culture in all the provinces of the country”, according to the Algerian news agency APS.

He reaffirmed this call in his speech on Saturday, noting that to achieve the objectives of the organization, it must work “fruitfully” with other associations and its partners in civil society.

He praised the efforts of the Numidia Oran association in promoting Amazigh culture.

Two years ago, Assad worked with the association to publish and translate 14 Amazigh stories into 13 languages. The stories are expected to be published in the coming months in cooperation with the National Foundation for Typographical Arts.

About Wesley V. Finley

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