Today, on July 18, the State Agency of Ukraine for Foreign Affairs in cooperation with the Embassy of Ukraine in Kuwait presented a historic publication – the first translation of Kuwaiti short stories “In Search of Precious Pearls” into Ukrainian. These are unique 22 short stories by 10 Kuwaiti writers who depict the distinctive and mysterious culture of Kuwaitis based on deeply rooted social and family values.
Director of the State Agency of Ukraine for Foreign Affairs Hennadii Nadolenko made an introductory speech to the participants of the online presentation. Ambassador of Ukraine to the State of Kuwait Oleksandr Balanutsa and Third Secretary of the Embassy, author and compiler Olha Seheda spoke about the role of cultural diplomacy and the importance of implementing such projects to strengthen bilateral cooperation.
The presentation of the first edition of Kuwaiti short stories in Ukrainian is an exciting historical event that strengthens our ties with the State of Kuwait and opens up new opportunities for mutual understanding and cooperation between our peoples.
Public diplomacy projects such as our collection of Kuwaiti short stories translated into Ukrainian are a bridge between the two countries and their peoples. Each Ukrainian Embassy abroad is looking for projects that actualize common points of contact between Ukraine and the host country. In Kuwait, it is important for us to increase the level of support for Ukraine in its war of liberation and increase the amount of assistance. I hope that this type of literary and translation project will bring us closer to achieving this goal.
As a diplomat, it is difficult for me to overestimate the achievements of Ukrainian translators of Arabic literature also because Ukraine is beginning a qualitatively new stage of communication with the Global South, which includes the Arab world. Is it really possible to find common ground if the portrait of the interlocutor consists of only analytical references and newspaper reports? I think that literature as a mirror of the life of a certain country can clarify such mental peculiarities, traumas, or vice versa, the pride of a certain people, which cannot be conveyed even by Al Jazeera stories.