Launch of TEDinArabic lauded
Minister of State and President of Qatar National Library H E Dr. Hamad bin Abdulaziz Al Kuwari
Doha: Key Qatari personnel endorsed and lauded the launch of TEDinArabic by Qatar Foundation (QF) in partnership with TED, yesterday.
TEDinArabic is TED’s first initiative to focus on sharing solutions, inventions and stories in the Arabic language. Minister of State and President of Qatar National Library H E Dr Hamad bin Abdulaziz Al Kuwari has said that TED has been considered to be among the most distinguished initiatives of its kind since its establishment in 1985.
“It has strengthened the belief that ideas have the ability to change our thinking patterns, our behaviour, and even our world. It has become an intellectual, cultural, and scientific phenomenon that resonates throughout the world. Although its talks have been firstly in English for many years, it has nevertheless managed to successfully overcome language and discipline barriers,” he said.
“Qatar National Library is delighted that Qatar Foundation and TED have partnered to create a platform for the Arabic language. It is a partnership that illustrates the meaning of strengthening bridges of communication with cultural initiatives, and opening up horizons for exchanging ideas and experiences in the context of cultural diversity. And it reinforces the importance of the Arabic language in our world, echoes the German poet Johann Wolfgang van Goethe’s statemen: 'It is possible that there is no language in which thought, word and character can be harmonised with ancient originality as is the case in the Arabic language'.
“This partnership will add a new dimension to the prosperity of the Arabic language which is being currently witnessed throughout cyberspace, as international newspapers, news agencies, websites and magazines are launching Arabic-language platforms in order to reach out to Arabic-speaking audiences,” he added.
For more than 1,000 years, the Arabic language has been the primary language of human knowledge in the fields of thought, belief, literature, philosophy, science, astronomy, medicine, pharmacy, and engineering. It was, and still is, the incubator of our heritage, and it remains, for us, a homeland of knowledge.
“We must make every effort to revive the historical role of the Arabic language, as it is a constant component of our identity. This partnership between Qatar Foundation and TED supports efforts to preserve identity and the Arabic language as well as to confirm its capacity to absorb ideas in various disciplines of literature, sciences and the arts.
“We are confident that this new platform, TEDinArabic, will mark an important stage in expanding the circulation of the Arabic language and communicating its translation of human experience in various disciplines. It will achieve wide resonance, response, and interest from all Arabic speakers, not only in Qatar and the Arab world, but also worldwide, so that the Arabic language remains active and alive,” said Al Kuwari.
Aysha Al Ansari, Head of Heritage Collections at Qatar National Library, has said that the Arabic language is one of the most expressive and profound languages in the world, characterised by the beauty of its words and pronunciation.
But what distinguishes it further is that it has not changed throughout the ages, which is testament to the strength of our heritage and the progress of our nations, our civilisation, and our ancient culture.
Many of the efforts being made by Qatar National Library, and its Heritage Library, aim to preserve our Arabic language and its proud heritage, which is represented in manuscripts, documents, and books across various fields of knowledge.
“The partnership between Qatar Foundation and TED reflects the leading role that Qatar is playing in promoting and preserving the Arabic language. Collaborating with global partners in creating a platform in Arabic to spread ideas across various aspects of knowledge contributes greatly to the prosperity of Arabic language, one of the six primary languages of the United Nations,” said Al Ansari.
“Despite the huge strides that Arabic content has achieved, thanks to information and communications technology and audio/visual media, there are still many challenges facing our language, and Arabic content still needs to be promoted through more initiatives and partnerships.
“Through Qatar Foundation’s partnership with TED, focused on the Arabic language, we will move closer to achieving that continued prosperity of this language,” she added.