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Vox Populi Roundup (August)

[A picture from the play [A picture from the play "While I Was Waiting". July 2017. Image by Sara Krulwich via the New York Times.]

English

Mashrou’ Leila and the night club’s political power
On a recent breezeless afternoon, I met two young Saudi women sitting on the grass outside the Prospect Park Bandshell, in Brooklyn. They were wearing T-shirts emblazoned with the logo of the Lebanese alternative-rock band Mashrou’ Leila, and they were snapping selfies where the band was scheduled to headline at the BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival later that evening. 

Can Arab Artists Survive?
Can Arab artists survive the shrinking space for freedom of expression in many of their home countries? Can they survive the difficulty of finding a place to work with colleagues? Can they survive being endlessly turned down for visas? Can they survive the risk of becoming like a luxury brand name for collectors, a Rolex watch, instead of helping the wider public open their eyes, hearts, and brains? Those were some of the questions at the center of an all-day symposium held recently at the British Museum on the “Survival of the Artist.”

 We talked to LGBT Muslims who refuse to give up on their faith
To many, "Muslim queer" is considered an oxymoron, as the two words seem mutually exclusive. Many Muslims who identify as LGBTQ+ are often pushed to choose between one of the two attributes, rather than embrace them both.

What if we let it up to Arab artists to be the ones to tell their (hi)story?
In the past few years, Arab aesthetics have been omnipresent in fashion, cinema, photography and music. For Arab creatives, this felt like a source of pride and the hope for greater visibility, at first. Till the day they realized Western creatives were covering those projects solo. With Ilyes Grieb, Moroccan photographer and recent victim of plagiarism, we decided to talk about this reality.

What a novel can say about the Egyptian revolution
In 2016, five years after the ouster of former President Hosni Mubarak, the Egyptian government decided to alter public mentions of the 2011 revolution. It omitted names of activists from grade-school textbooks, and downplayed the mass protests in some high-school texts.

 Abdo Shanan’s Algerian Photographs
The photographs in Abdo Shanan’s series “Diary: Exile” (2014–2016) take viewers by the hand and race them through a vertiginous world of gritty, everyday intimacies. 

Mohammad Zahzah x Khansa release music video for Khayef  
Bringing the past and present together in a variety of ways, the video explores gender perceptions and roles within an Arab family.   

Mashrou’ Leila release music video for Roman
The video self-consciously toys with the intersection of gender with race by celebrating and championing a coalition of Arab and Muslim women, styled to over-articulate their ethnic background, in a manner more typically employed by Western media to victimise them. This seeks to disturb the dominant global narrative of hyper-secularised (white) feminism, which increasingly positions itself as incompatible with Islam and the Arab world, celebrating the various modalities of Middle Eastern feminism.

Hamed Sinno speaking on intersectionality in resistance
"I think feminism is necessary for queer liberationism, I think feminism is necessary for socialism." Meet Mashrou’ Leila, the Lebanese band that's challenging political thought in the Middle East.

Video: Activists team up with Mashrou’ Leila to detox Beirut’s plastic binge
Amid an ongoing waste-management crisis, the Lebanese government is now directly dumping rubbish into the sea, making it impossible to swim safely anywhere along the coast this year… On Saturday, more than 250 activists taking matters into their own hands led a collective clean-up along one of Beirut's last non-privatised beaches, enlisting the help of Lebanese alt-rock band Mashrou' Leila.

From working in Israeli settlement farms to DJing
Refusing to work in Israeli settlements, these Palestinian women broke tradition and became DJs.

The Palestinian Museum’s Inaugural Exhibition Opening: Jerusalem Lives
Jerusalem Lives, the inaugural exhibition of the Palestinian Museum, taking place August 27 to December 15, 2017 in Birzeit, Palestine, is pleased to announce its participating artists.

Shubbak Festival 2017: a global celebration of Arab culture
What is the role of art in times of crisis? Vision speaks to Eckhard Thiemann, Artistic Director about what to expect at the biggest festival of contemporary Arab culture in London.

A play about Syria as a country in a coma
When one’s entire life is spent waiting, how does one measure the time? In the play “While I Was Waiting,” which on Saturday wrapped up a run as part of the Lincoln Center Festival, Omar (Mustafa Kur), a former telecom worker from the less affluent and besieged Damascus suburbs, gives us the sum of his life in days—10,749 to be precise. 

From Berber village to indie haven: Arts festival brings Algerians together
Ait Ouabane was chosen to host this year’s Raconte-Arts, Algeria’s most popular indie travelling festival. The event's 14th anniversary was packed with countless outdoor shows with free access. Thousands of people flocked to the picturesque city, home to pastel-coloured villas that adorn the landscape.

Saudi Arabia investigates video of woman in miniskirt
The authorities in Saudi Arabia are investigating a young woman who posted a video of herself wearing a miniskirt and crop-top in public.

Release of Araweelo Abroad Issue 03
The arrival of the third installment of Araweelo Abroad marks the online magazine’s continued commitment to showcasing the varied experiences of the Somali diaspora.


Arabic

ماهر منصور: الدراما السورية تموت سريريا منذ 6 أعوام أكد الناقد والصحفي، ماهر منصور، أن العمل الدرامي السوري في حالة موت سريري منذ ستة أعوام، أي منذ انطلاق الثورة السورية، لافتاً إلى أن الدراما السورية افتقدت خصوصيتها وباتت بعيدة جغرافياً وتاريخياً عن بيئتها الأصلية.

حملة بديهي
تهدف الحملة التي يديرها المركز اليمني لقياس الرأي العام لتوحيد الناس والمنظمات باتجاه إيصال صوت اليمنيين الداعي للحياة والعيش الكريم. كما تهدف الحملة إلى خلق زخم لمطالب اليمنيين بشأن متطلباتهم الأساسية الخاصة بالتعليم والصحة والأمن.  

بنت المصاروة - Bnt Al Masarwa
تهدف هذه الحملة لجمع تمويل لإنتاج الألبوم الثاني لفرقة  "بنت المصاروة - Bnt Al Masarwa" تحت عنوان  "مزغونة". سيعتمد هذا الألبوم على تجارب حياتية تم جمعها من خلال ورش عمل مع ٣٤ سيدة في صعيد مصر في الفترة ما بين آب\أغسطس 2016 وشباط\ فبراير 2017.

UNILEB يزن حلواني
يُعرف هذا الفيديو بأحد فناني الشارع "يزن حلواني" الذي حاز مؤخراً على الميدالية الذهبية في الرسم في الألعاب الفرنكوفونية الثامنة التي استضافتها ابيدجان عاصمة ساحل العاج.

السينمائيّون العراقيّون الشباب يكسرون التابوهات
بعد غزو العراق في عام 2003، بدأ الكثير من الشبّان يهتمّون بالسينما، الأمر الذي أنتج جيلاً جديداً من المخرجين وصنّاع السينما، إلّا أنّ هؤلاء يواجهون مشكلة أساسيّة في تمويل أعمالهم، إذ لا وجود لصناديق محلّيّة لدعمهم، والحكومة العراقيّة لا تولي اهتماماً لهذا الفنّ.

"راكونت أر" مبادرة تؤسس للفعل الثقافي المستقل لأول مرة بالجزائر
سجلت تظاهرة "راكونت أر" أو أحكي الفن نجاحاً كبيراً هذه السنة، حيث شهد اختتام الطبعة 14 منها أصداء إيجابية بين نشطاء مواقع التواصل الاجتماعي.

فرقة ام حسن - صغيرة جنت وانت صغيرون
أنشأ شباب عراقيين فرقة غنائية بلا آلات موسيقية تُدعى "فرقة أم حسن" ليحصلوا على مئات الآلاف من المشاهدات بالإضافة إلى أكثر من مئة ألف مشترك\ة في قناتهم على اليوتيوب. تنشر الفرقة أعمالها باللهجة عراقية ونادراً ما تُظهرها وسائل الإعلام الكُبرى. أدوات الفرقة هي عبارة عن ثلاجة، كرسي، مكنسة والكثير من المرح.

لماذا لا يكون المثقّفُ ثوريًّا؟ (ملفّ 2)
عادةً ما يُعتبر المثقّفُ مؤدِّيًا لدورٍ مهمٍّ في التغيير الاجتماعيّ. ومع أنّ هذا الاعتقاد قد يكون على جانبٍ كبيرٍ من الصحّة، فإنّه لا يمكننا أن نستنتجَ تلقائيًّا أنّ التغيير الذي يجلبه المثقّفُ إلى مجتمعه ثوريٌّ بالضرورة.

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Population (2016 est.): 80,274,604
Government: Republican Parliamentary Democracy
Year of independence: 1923
GDP: $856.8 billion (2016 est.); $1.698 trillion (2016 est., purchasing power parity)
Unemployment: 10.9% (2016 est.); Youth Unemployment (ages 15-24): 24.5% (est. Jan 2017)
Internet Users: 53.7% - 42.681 million (July 2015 est.)
Exchange Rate: ~ 3.5 Turkish lira per US dollar (2016 est.)
GDP Growth Rate: 2.9% (2016 est.)
Military Expenditures: 1.69% of GDP (2016) (World Rank: 35)
Health Expenditures: 5.4% of GDP (2014) (World Rank: 103)
Population Growth Rate: 5.4% of GDP (2014)
Age Structure: 0-14 years: 25.08% (male 10,303,153/female 9,833,713); 15-24 years: 16.11% (male 6,605,634/female 6,329,921); 25-54 years: 43.15% (male 17,541,137/female 17,094,141); 55-64 years: 8.36% (male 3,335,021/female 3,374,965); 65 years and over: 7.3% (male 2,603,655/female 3,253,264) (2016 est.)
Literacy: 95% (Male: 98.4%; Female: 91.8% [2015 est.])
Religious Demographics: Sunni Muslim 80-85%; Alevi Muslim 15-20%; Christian (various denominations) 0.13%; Jewish 0.03%
Ethnic Demographics: Turks 80%, Kurds 18%, Arabs 1.4%, Armenians 0.1%, and other (Assyrian, Greek Orthodox, Georgian, Circassian) 0.5%
Languages: Turkish, Kurdish, Zaza, Arabic, Armenian, Greek, Albanian, Neo-Aramaic Laz, Ladino
Area: 301,159 square miles