A GLIMPSE OF CULTURAL
A Glimpse of Cultural Restoration at York University
December 15, 2006
Toronto (Biyokulule Online): An exhibition of book launch in Somali literature was held at York University's Bethune Hall, on Wednesday evening, November 29, 2006.
The event was about the Somali translation of Ken Schoolland’s important work, The Adventures of Jonathan Gullible, which was made ready by a Somali author, Faisal Ahmed Hassan. This Somali translation is indeed the result of an enormous effort and commitment carried out by Faisal Hassan. The book which was published with the permission of the author was launched late last month and was invited to Somali readers in Toronto, whom the book will interest. Attendance was free of charge.
Discussing about his work, Faisal Hassan whispered that he loved the book so much and thought that it would be wise to translate into Somali and share it with his Community. On one occasion, I asked Faisal whether he has made inquiries about the feasibility study that show any profits for his work. He was not hesitant to point out that even if the benefits do not commensurate with the production cost his work is not regrettable and deserves support, so long as it introduces more Somali Canadians to the pleasures of reading in Somali. “In the process of achieving those ends,” he adds, “flipping the pages of the book might open the doors of free market and form small waves of new ideas within the Somali community.”
The new translation was published in Greater Toronto Area and is entitled: Halgankii Yoonis Maskiin: Taxanihii Suuqa Madax Bannaan.
Somali Students' Association at York University (SSAY) organized the event. The event was attended by the translator of the book, Faisal Hassan, and Jim McIntosh who is a member of Ontario Libertarian Party, and many prominent Somali Torontonians including Mohamed Dahir Hassan of Somali Media, Muqaalka Soomaalida.
Student organizers were aware of the new beginning and therefore knew that this book-event assumes a landmark. For them, their new multicultural home, Canada, is no longer a subject to query. It is a fact of life. The participants of the event, valuable although not as large as organizers had hoped, managed to scoop Somali literature in an hour. Somali students, in particular, marveled that such an opportunity could be found at their campus.
To recall the main activities of the event, the vice president of the Somali Students' Association, Malyun Afrah, opened the event by taking in the pleasure to welcome the appearance of this new trend of Somali literature in political economy and philosophy. Speaking on behalf of the Somali students at York University, Afrah welcomed all participants to the occasion; and she introduced to the audience Jim McIntosh who delivered the keynote address.
Polishing the mood, McIntosh seized the moment and professedly chose to present his philosophy of liberty and later showed the audience a ten-minute video of computer-animated information. Then, it was followed by the main event of the night, a book-reading session by author Faisal Hassan. He quickly took the center stage and read few passages from the book. The book is adventure-packed one and there are enough risky-taking themes to attract people with nomadic-background lifestyle, like the Somalis. The book is an eclectic collection of stories that speak to the beauty and the risk of free market.
Such book-launch event, within a small growing community, emphasizes the popularity of Ken Schoolland’s work on the basics of economic principles, which has already been translated into many languages. Translator Hassan proudly declares, “One more language is being woven into the fabric of the basics of free market.” He also showed his optimism by uttering that his translation will greatly increase the number of Somali Canadians who desire to read Somali literature.
At the end of the evening session, Faisal presented with copies of his new translation, which is worth $20 each, to a number of students. The book is expected to be available at Somali stores in Greater Toronto Area soon.
As members of the Somali Community, Roobdoon Forum thanks Somali Students' Association for their effort to arrange such cultural and educational event. We particularly thank the following members:
Malyun Afrah – Vice-president external, Somali Students' Association, York University.
Fahmo Kulmiye – Communication, SSAY.
Shire Brandi – Treasury – SSAY.
Note: If you are looking for an information or want to buy this book, write to:
P.O. Box 48064
181 Yonge Street
Cost: $20 (US Dollar) including shipping and handling expenses.
You can also reach Faisal Hassan at: