Mohammed Achaari

2023 Judge

Judge Profile: 

Mohammed Achaari (Chair) is a Moroccan writer and novelist, born in Zerhoun, Morocco. He studied Law at Mohammed V University and began publishing his first poems and stories in Moroccan newspapers in the late 1960s, before becoming a columnist and editor-in-chief of the cultural supplement of the Socialist Union newspaper. For three consecutive years, he was head of the Moroccan Writers’ Union. His political work led him to be imprisoned, but he was later appointed Minister of Culture and then Minister of Culture and Communication between 1998 and 2007, in the first two-chamber government in the history of Morocco. He has published 12 poetry collections and six novels, including The Arch and the Butterfly, winner of the International Prize for Arabic Fiction in 2011, The Box of Names (2014), Three Nights (2017) The Old Spring (2019), and From Wood and Clay (2021). He won the International Arkanah Award (2022) in recognition of his poetry. His work has been translated into a number of languages.