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Cristina Ali Farah

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Subject: Italian Somalis, List of African writers by country, Mogadishu
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Cristina Ali Farah

Cristina Ali Farah
Born Cristina Cali Farax
Verona, Italy
Occupation novelist, essayist
Nationality  Italy
Alma mater La Sapienza University
Subject immigration, colonialism, feminism
Notable works Madre piccola (2007)

Cristina Ali Farah (born 1973 in Verona, Italy) is an Italian writer of Somali and Italian origin.


Born in Italy to a Somali father and an Italian mother, Farah grew up in Mogadishu, the capital of Somalia. She attended an Italian school there until the Somalia Civil War broke out in 1991.

Farah and her family subsequently relocated to Pécs, Hungary, but then later moved to her birthplace, Verona, Italy. There, she obtained an Italian Lettere University degree in 2001 at La Sapienza University in Rome, where she currently resides.

Literary career

Since 1999, Farah has been involved in intercultural education with projects developed for students, teachers and female immigrants revolving around tales, post-colonial literature and immigration topics. In these areas, she has collaborated with various Italian associations and NGOs such as Cies, Candelaria, Kel'lam, the Intercultural Forum of Caritas, and l'Ass. Prezzemolo.

For some time, Farah also contributed to Somali linguistic studies at the linguistic department of the Third University of Rome, participating in the "Scritture migranti" ("migrant writing") conference that was held between November–December 2004 in Campidoglio in Rome. She participated in the fifth Migrant Italian Writers Seminar organized by Sagarana in July 2005.

In December 2005, she presented her work at Brown University (USA) during the "Migrations and Literature in contemporary Italy" conference, and at Columbia University in New York City during the "Italians tales" course presented by Paolo Valesio, chair of the Italian department.

In October of the same year, she gave a lecture about the Somali diaspora at the "The Last Caravanes of the Horn of Africa" meeting in Milan.

Farah is president of the Migra news agency, and a writer for Caffè newspaper. She also writes for other periodicals and Italian magazines such as Repubblica, Malepeggio, l'Europeo, Carta, Magiordomus, Accattone and Liberazione.

In Italy, her novels and poetry have been published in various magazines such as Nuovi Argomenti, Quaderni del 900, Pagine, Sagarana, El Ghibli, Caffè, Crocevia, and in the anthologies Ai confini del verso: Poesia della migrazione in italiano ("Poetry of migration in Italy") and A New Map: The poetry of Migrant Writers in Italy, edited by Mia Lecomte.

In 2006, Farah won the national literary competition, "Lingua Madre" ("Mother Tongue"), promoted by the Women Thoughts Studies Center. She was also honored by the city of Torino at the International Torino Book Fair.

In 2007, she published her first novel, Madre piccola ("Little Mother").


  • Ai confini del verso: Poesia della migrazione in italiano, (At the boundaries of verse. Poetry of migration) Le Lettere", Florence, 2006.
  • A New Map: The poetry of Migrant Writers in Italy, texts collected by Mia Lecomte et Luigi Bonaffini, Green Integer, Los Angeles, 2007.
  • Madre piccola ("Little Mother"), Frassinelli, 2007.

See also

External links

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