Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9782360573936
Collection: 80 mots du monde
12 x 18 cm
Weight: 180 gr
Pages: 192
First publication: 21/02/2024
CLIL: 3718

80 mots de Tunisie

(80 words from Tunisia)

Preface : Frédéric Bobin

80 words which set a collection of stories about Tunisia. As well as analysing the words themselves and their resonance in the hearts of the men and women who use them, they evoke the author's special bond with her native land.

What is striking about 80 mots de Tunisie is Emme Belhaj Yahia's great culture and in-depth knowledge of the French language. With great finesse and tenderness, she evokes the charm of the life she once knew as part of a traditional family, but she is also able to set out with clear-sightedness the difficulties facing her country today. Her years as a teacher, the scientific responsibilities she has assumed and the action she has taken on behalf of women mean that the words she has chosen - which tell us a great deal about the dialectal Arabic of Tunisia - cover a wide field of exploration.

Paper book


(...) Through the 80 words exercise, Emna Belhaj Yahia provides the keys to understanding. She makes you want to meet the country. (...)

(Reader's comments on Bablio, 23/04/2024)
Online article

(...) Part philologist, part historian, sometimes tempted by sociology or psychoanalysis, willingly yielding to the temptation of autobiography, Emna Belhaj Yahia has many angles of attack, with a certain predilection for narrative and pictorial construction, both of which play on light and shade, on oppositions (never clear-cut) between sacred and profane, evolution and sclerosis, East and West...

(Magazine Leaders (Béchir Garbouj), 20/04/2024)
Online article

In his Maghreb Orient Express program on TV5 Monde, Mohamed Kaci invites: the duo Mauvais Œil; philosopher and essayist Emna Belhaj Yahia for 80 mots de Tunisie (éditions L'Asiathèque); anthropologist Jean-Loïc Le Quellec for Nos ancêtres les pharaons. Cinq siècles d'illusions sur l'Égypte ancienne (éditions du Détour).

(Program Maghreb Orient Express, TV5 Monde, 22/03/2024)
Online article

In a delightful little book, philosopher and novelist Emna Belhaj Yahia tells the story of her Tunisia in 80 words.

(En toutes lettres - Édition, investigation et débat d'idées, 02/03/2024)
Online article

This is a very carefully written, enjoyable book that introduces readers to the rich and diverse Tunisian world and way of life.

(Leaders Magazine (Tunisia), 01/03/2024)
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Emna Belhaj Yahia

Emna Belhaj Yahia is a Tunisian author holding a degree in philosophy from the Faculty of Letters in Paris. She taught philosophy in Tunisia before becoming scientific director of the Tunisian Academy of Sciences, Letters and Arts. She has been active in a feminist group and the Tunisian Human Rights League. She has devoted herself to writing and novels since the early 90s. The 2011 revolution, but also, in the years that followed, the rise of conservative religious parties and the questioning by these parties of certain freedoms acquired by women, led her to a reflection that she formalized in particular in the book Tunisie, questions à mon pays (Éditions de l'Aube, Paris, 2014). She is also interested in the status of the French language among Maghrebi women novelists.

Her publications include L'Étage invisible (Joëlle Losfeld, Paris, 1997), Tasharej (Balland, Paris, 2000), Jeux de rubans (Elyzad, Tunis, 2011; Prix Comar d'or 2012), En pays assoiffé (Éditions Des femmes, Paris, 2021).

Photo: © Moncef Belhaj Yahia

Frédéric Bobin

Frédéric Bobin is a journalist at Le Monde, responsible for the North Africa section. He was the daily's correspondent in Tunisia (2015-2019) after being posted to China (1998-2004) and then India (2008-2014). He is the author of three books on China: Pékin en mouvement co-signed with Wang Zhe (Autrement, 2005), Good bye Mao ? (La Martinière, 2006) and Voyage au centre de la Chine (Philippe Picquier, 2008).


80 mots du monde
ISSN : 2650-4790
The collection "80 words of the world" offers a journey to the heart of a country through the words that count in the languages of the women and men who live there.