Berlin: It’s a consolation

In an interview, the writer Widad Nabi speaks about what Berlin means to her.

“Eine Stadt, sie hat kein Interesse an deiner Identität.

Berlin kümmert sich nicht um deine Nationalität, Hautfarbe, Religion oder ideologische Überzeugung.

Sie sagt zu ihren Bewohnern: ‘Sei wie du bist und wie du liebst.’

Berlin hat Freiräume. Die Person darin kann in ihrem Haus isoliert sein und niemanden treffen.

Personen können bis zum Morgen mit Freunden auf der Straße zuschauen, tanzen und singen.

Und ich mache alles wie Berliner.”

“A city, it has no interest in your identity.

Berlin doesn’t care about your nationality, skin color, religion or ideological conviction.

It says to its inhabitants: ‘Be as you are and how you love.’

Berlin has open spaces. People can be isolated in their houses and not meet anybody.

People can watch, dance, and sing with their friends on the street until the morning.

And I do everything like the Berliners do.”

Widad Nabi was born in Kobani and now lives in Berlin. The Syrian-Kurdish writer studied economics in Aleppo. She published numerous texts in newspapers and magazines. In Germany, she has published in the Berliner Zeitung, SPON and Kursbuch, among others. Her first book in German was published in 2019 and in 2018 she received the first “Weiterschreiben-Stipendium Wiesbaden”.

In her texts Widad Nabi deals with the loss of familiar places, people and languages, but also with her arrival in the new city of Berlin. Her poems, which are published in the “Weiterschreiben”, can also be listened to there.

In a written interview with We Refugees Archive in July 2020, Widad Nabi answered questions about her life in Berlin, her memories and hopes.

Published with kind permission of Widad Nabi.