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“What matters is not whether we can live together… is knowing how to live together"

“What matters is not whether we can live together… is knowing how to live together"

October 25, 2010

This past weekend the French-Lebanese writer Amin Maalouf received the 2010 Prince of Asturias Award for Letters. In his acceptance speech Maalouf highlighted the need to see the diversity within our societies as a reality that will continue growing and also as an opportunity to enrich our societies.

“Diversity itself is neither a blessing nor a curse. It is simply a reality. The world is a mosaic of countless shades and our country, our provinces, our cities will be increasingly the image and likeness of the world. What matters is not whether we can live together despite differences of color, language or belief, what matters is knowing how to live together, how to turn our diversity for the benefit, not disaster.”

It is precisely his commitment to diversity that encouraged Maalouf to join the Expert Advisory Panel of the Club de Madrid’s Shared Societies Project. This project and the panel that supports it shares Maalouf’s belief that the greatest challenge of our time is that of learning how to live together. Therefore one of its goals is to influence the political debate for leaders to take action and promote social cohesion.

Watch the full speech at the award's ceremony

Download a copy of the speech (in Spanish)

About Amin Maalouf



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