Welcome on MEDiakitab blog. This program aims at sharing information and ressources dedicated to reading and writing practices, from story telling to digital form, in the Euro-Mediterranean space.

MEDiakitab association, located in Marseille, is in charge of administrating the blog. Contents are a reflection of the activities, analysis and knowledge developped by the network members.


Oran story telling festival : 10 years of meetings on the art of storytelling

Kan ya makan… words and stories to bewitch the city

Oran storytelling festival was founded in 2006 by « the litle reader of Oran » and celebrate 10 years old in 2016. An opportunity to gather the main characters and to step back and think about the meaning and the future orientation.

A varied program : stories from here and there, in the old and new days

Capture d’écran 2015-04-01 à 17.30.47Every year, in march, about 30 places pay tribute to oral tradition in order to feed Oran people ears, whether young or old, with dreams, quotes, jokes, and stories. All possible styles are used in the language celebration : from farce to fantasy, from epic to daily stories, from life stories to traditional fairy tales. Likewise, over the year, the festival widen the destinations. First storytellers from Algeria and the mediterranean area, then from Sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America.

Many stories are told in one of the three language spoken in Algeria : Arabic, Tamazigh and French. But other languages and dialects are invited to take part. For Zoubida Kouti : « You do not need to understand the language. Stories’messages spread beyond words. »

A popular event with many stages

Capture d’écran 2015-04-01 à 17.30.35Like troubadours, story tellers share their words in famous or unusual places : schools, cultural centres, associations, coffees, but also tramways or during a commentated walk.  The festival claims to put the story telling practice as close as possible to the young and adult audience. It displays shows in several districts of the city : open-air show, as the walk along the pond, or in the rose garden, private atmosphere as in the Turkish bath of Sidi El Houari, in the heart of the popular district of the city, or in public spaces as in the Ahmed Wahbi conservatory, or in the local cultural centres… All the social classes have been part of the audience ! Some events are even considered to be essential, now : young public shows in the regional Abdelkader Alloula theatre of Oran, fairy tales night in the French Institute, and the story walk in the Ibn Badis garden achieved a great success.

Words spread thanks to Capture d’écran 2015-04-01 à 17.34.55the involvement of many local partners : women association, socio-cultural association, training centres, diocese of Oran… and with the faithful partner : the organisation « Bel Horizon »… All these energies serve a unique objective : meeting the public.

The association is also supported by local public authorities. The French Institute of Oran, takes part in programming the fairy tales night and the organisation COBIAC support the festival by sending two story tellers and by following the artistic direction and organization.

Storytelling, an citizen art to be shared

Beyond the differences of11032750_950110081675076_5331291016332767129_n style, language and culture, the stories messages share the same values of peace and tolerance. In 2014 festival named « stories at the crossroads of cultures » celebrated the diversity of stories that are told around the world. In 2015, as a mockery of current events, Goha, Scheherazade, Grimm, Amrouche and many others were invited to proclaim the universal question of living together and the many answers to invent. A special recognition was given to women and especially to Assia Djebar, a major figure of Algerian literature. The festival is also a simple testimony of universality of intelligence, generosity and wisdom.

It is also to encourage citizenship, that the association shares the experience. For the team, the story telling promotion is a way to fight against a kind of disregard toward oral tradition.  Howerver, is should be recognised as a special art, with special know hows. That is why the festival include training session for Young Algerian storytellers, that are then invited to participate in the program. Similarly, a « Center for storytelling » were founded in 2014 that could host a resources center in young and oral literature in Maghreb, Machrek and Africa.

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Contact :

Zoubida Kouti
President of « The little reader »

Consultant in cultural project ingineering