Culture



A portrait of the jihadist as a young man
Posted on 02/12/2008 - 16:24
Over the course of two years, Mahmoud al-Massad, a Jordanian director of Palestinian origin, filmed the life of an Islamic fundamentalist in his home town of Zarqa, Jordan. The result shows the complexity and inconsistencies of what is generally seen as a homogeneous Jihadist milieu. al-massad.jpg 
'The Arab world is more generous and inspired than yours'
Posted on 27/11/2008 - 14:10
Yasmina Khadra is the pseudonym of Mohammed Moulessehoul, a former major in the Algerian Army, now full-time novelist. In this interview with Richard Marcus, the exiled writer of such modern classics as The Swallows of Kabul, The Attack and In The Name of God, talks about his writing and the differences between Western and Arab culture. yasmina khadra 
Sex and the Arabic city
Posted on 27/11/2008 - 13:54
No Arab book has ever been sold for so much money to foreign publishing houses. Though it is part of the current trend that is witnessing both real and fictional erotic confessions by women writers storming the best-seller lists, Salwa Al Neimi's novel, Proof of Honey, has substantially more to offer than the mere lurid sensationalism of some of its competitors. Al_Neimi.JPG 
The Secret Life of Syrian Lingerie
Posted on 27/11/2008 - 12:51
While visiting Syria, two London-based women of Arab origin became fascinated by the risqué lingerie openly on display in the souqs and shops of Damascus and Aleppo. The book they produced is one of the most unusual publications you are likely to see on the Arab world. SyriaLingerieCover.jpg 
In Lebanon, no offense allowed even if none is taken
Posted on 12/11/2008 - 16:50
Several photos at an exhibit by Lebanese filmmaker Jocelyne Saab have been removed because they were considered too controversial by the owner of the exhibition space. 'Fear is the worst kind of censorship,' says Saab's spokesperson. nasrallah barbies.jpg 
Expressionism in Saudi Fine Arts: it's time to document
Posted on 07/11/2008 - 14:13
Lebanon’s daily Al-Akhbar featured an account of Ahmad Flamban’s initiative to document the history of Saudi art. Flamban’s book – Saudi Plastic Arts - profiles 400 men and women artists in an attempt to shed some light on the milestones of the Arabic Expressionist movement – which is surprisingly half a century old. saudi artists 
Censors target Beirut film festival
Posted on 20/10/2008 - 18:48
The Ayam Beirut film festival only just launched this weekend, and already one of its movie is fighting government censorship. But with sixty local and international movies on the program, censorship is just one of the discussions taking place. MENASSAT's Sawseen Kawzally has this report. beirut film festival 
Getting away from it all in Egypt's writers' colony
Posted on 16/10/2008 - 14:14
A two-hour drive from the Egyptian capital, the tiny village of Tunis has over the past few decades become the preferred getaway for Cairo's writers, intellectuals and artists. MENASSAT paid a visit to the eco-village within Tunis, Zad Al-Mosafer, where a former journalist is planning to open a research center dedicated to Egyptian literature. cairo  
Finding refuge from censorship... in Syria
Posted on 07/10/2008 - 15:34
Syria is usually associated with repression of freedom of expression. Yet, to outspoken Palestinian painter and writer Mahmoud Shahin, whose books have been banned in several Arab countries, it is a safe haven. MENASSAT met with the charismatic figure in Damascus. artist.jpg 
Translating Libya: Non-political stories of love and hardship
Posted on 03/10/2008 - 14:39
Hardly any Libyan literature has been translated from Arabic. Now, a former American diplomat to Libya has published a collection of Libyan short stories in English. The edition offers insights into a hitherto undiscovered literary landscape. libya book