Listen to interviews with members of PEN
Canada's writers in exile program. These interviews were produced as MP3 audio files by Souad Sharabani.
To listen to the interview, click the icon.
To download the interview for your mp3 player: right-click the icon and choose "Save Target As...".
Mir Hussain Mahdavi
Mir Hussain Mahdavi was a crusading Afghan newspaper editor, whose democratic views prompted Islamic leaders in Kabul to put a bounty on his head. Mahdavi, his wife, and his two young daughters arrived in Canada in October 2003, after being granted emergency refugee status. Mir was a writer-in-residence at George Brown College in 2005 and a writer for the Hamilton Spectator in 2007.
Fereshteh Molavi is an Iranian writer who has worked as a scholar,
editor and translator. She has published books and essays including a
novel, two collections of short stories, and Listen to the Reed - a
chapbook published by PEN Canada in 2005 based on her dialogue with
writer Karen Connelly.
Interview (3.2 mb)
Qasim Hirsi Farah is from Somalia. He was forced into exile after
receiving death threats related to books he wrote supportive of
women's rights and critical of some local cultural practices. Farah
holds a PHD in environmental law.
Interview (2.4 mb)
Aaron Berhane was born in Eritrea where he worked as a journalist for one of the largest independent newspapers. He was forced into exile following a massive government sweep of journalists. In Toronto he founded Meftih, a local Eritrean community newspaper.
Interview (2.8 mb)
Morteza Abdolalian is a journalist, blogger, poet and human rights advocate. After being kidnapped, imprisoned and persecuted, Abdolalian escaped Iran to continue writing, advocate for human rights and help bring freedom and democracy to his homeland. His English blog Iran Watch Canada monitors human rights in Iran www.moriab.blogspot.com.
Interview (2.6 mb)
Nooshin Salari was born in Tabriz, Iran. She immigrated to Canada in 1993 and graduated from pharmacy school at the University of Saskatchewan. Salari began writing as a teenager in Iran. She currently lives in Ottawa.
Interview (3 mb)