The Belgian-Moroccan author Nadia Dala is a nominee for the Diwan Awards in the category art and culture. The awards are handed out 23 March and celebrate successful Belgians with Moroccan roots.
Dala was born to a Belgian mother and Moroccan father, at a young age finding herself being shunned by her mother’s community but welcomed in her father’s.
Her first novel Waarom ik mijn moeder de hals doorsneed appeared in 2008 and was praised by reviewers for being raw and surreal. She only just published her second novel De biecht in 2017. ‘Readers often e-mail or message me saying how the story really touched them,’ says Dala.
‘I didn’t expect to be nominated for the Diwan, for me it’s a confirmation that what I’m doing, what I write about is okay’. Dala also stays headstrong and doesn’t agree with the current literary landscape in Belgium where people with migration backgrounds should write about migration problems.
‘Receiving this nomination gives me a psychological push to work on my third novel,’ which is currently in a research-phase. Next to writing Dala also lectures international courses that focus on diversity at Thomas More.
Placing your vote for the Diwan awards can be done on the Diwan Awards website where Nadia Dala is listed under Art and Culture.
De biecht (2017) tells the story of a journalist who’s put aside professionally. Before making her big comeback she must first dive into her past.
Text: Jan Vervloet, photo: ©Lies Willaert