Belfast Telegraph

UK Website Of The Year

Helping Afghan women is poetry in motion

By Lesley Houston

Published 16/09/2015

Professor Sinead Morrissey from the Seamus Heaney Centre for Poetry joins Julia Paul, a broadcast lecturer at Queen’s University, for a Skype session to teach poetry to women in Afghanistan
Professor Sinead Morrissey from the Seamus Heaney Centre for Poetry joins Julia Paul, a broadcast lecturer at Queen’s University, for a Skype session to teach poetry to women in Afghanistan

The words of some of some of our most acclaimed bards are helping to give a voice to women in Afghanistan, whose past is heavily steeped in the oral poetry tradition.

Writers like Belfast Poet Laureate Sinead Morrissey are crossing timezones and thousands of miles this week through Skype to participate in the project Afghan Women Spread The Word in a bid to help heal their war-torn society.

Queen's University Belfast broadcast lecturer Julia Paul began the project in 2013 by visiting Kabul and training women to record their oral histories.

"Afghan women have a huge tradition of knowing poems by heart, and have such a passion and hunger for writing," she said.

"I think we can all learn a lot from each other, and how to heal through reconciliation. I love the idea that writing about trauma can be a therapeutic tool and help a society move forward."

Belfast Telegraph

Read More

From Belfast Telegraph