Under Siege in Damascus, ‘A Book Becomes A Person’s Best Friend’

via Arab Literature (in English): BY MLYNXQUALEY on MARCH 24, 2016 • ( 0 ) The BBC recently published an interview with an activist-librarian working in the suburbs of Damascus, identified only as Ahmed: The BBC reporter asked “Ahmed” why — when there is no food, no electricty, and no safety from shelling or barrel bombs — would people want a library. Ahmed answered: Even if you are hungry, and you … Read more Under Siege in Damascus, ‘A Book Becomes A Person’s Best Friend’

Listening to Refugees: 5 Novels, Stories, and Essays

via the very excellent Arab Literature (in English): BY MLYNXQUALEY on SEPTEMBER 15, 2015 • ( 2 ) Abo Adnan, a Syrian who lives in a refugee camp in Germany, asks that we not just look at refugees, but listen. Refugee literary voices: African Titanics, by Abu Bakr Khaal. Khaal is a refugee who left Eritrea for Denmark. His novel follows his characters “through the Sahara Desert, to cramped refugee hideaways, to prisons … Read more Listening to Refugees: 5 Novels, Stories, and Essays

Muhammad Idrees Ahmad: On Monsterphilia and Assad

Fascinating article on Syria, even if I don’t agree with everything Ahmad writes; below the opening paras — you can read the full article in Guernica Magazine, here. October 24, 2013 The problems with the “anti-imperialist” position on Syria. Image from Flickr via david_axe By Muhammad Idrees Ahmad Earlier this month, the British street artist Banksy produced a video on Syria that attracted over five million viewers in three days. At a … Read more Muhammad Idrees Ahmad: On Monsterphilia and Assad

Syria, Dilemma

And then this, via the daily Perlentaucher, which strikes me as a sadly accurate assessment of the dilemma, by the Syrian philosopher Sadik J. Al-Azm in the FAZ (Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung) in my quick translation, this morning: “The international discourse on Syria is shaped primarily by concerns for the protection of minorities: Christians, Kurds, Alawites, Druses, Ismailis, Turkmen, Circassians and others. It is however the majority — the Sunnis — … Read more Syria, Dilemma

Hala Mohammad: Waiting for Spring

Via aljazeera’s “Artscape” series Poets of Protest: Exiled in Paris, the Syrian poet despairs for her country as the crisis there deepens. Renowned and outspoken Syrian poet Hala Mohammad explains how she thinks poetry is central to the political change underway in the Middle East, and especially to the fight against Bashar al-Assad, the Syrian president. Her work is respected for tackling memory, fear, alienation and loneliness and they are … Read more Hala Mohammad: Waiting for Spring

Malek Jandali’s “Freedom” (Qashoush Symphony) مالك جندلي حرية سيمفونية القاشوش

Malek Jandali (Arabic: مالك جندلي‎) was born in Germany in 1972 & raised in Homs. He is a Syrian composer and pianist who began his musical career as a pianist, winning the first prize at the National Young Artists’ competition of Syria in 1988. He’s considered to be among the most versatile and creative musicians in the Arab world. He is the first Syrian and only Arab musician to arrange music based on the oldest music notation in the world, which was discovered in the Bronze … Read more Malek Jandali’s “Freedom” (Qashoush Symphony) مالك جندلي حرية سيمفونية القاشوش

A Short Syrian Film

The following short film was directed by Dani Abo Louh and Mohamad Omran. It was recently released via Vimeo. It was brought to my attention by Marilyn Hacker. Published on the Jadaliyya site: Conte de printemps from La Chaise Renversee on Vimeo.

A Call from Syrian Writers

Transmission of the call addressed to all poets and writers in the world إحالة نداء إلى كافة الروائيين والشعراء والنقاد في العالم Check out the video before reading the text and thank you for your signatures   The Syrian revolution 2011 تاريخ  الثورة السورية الحديث http://www.facebook.com/l/f966dz7Sw-ad02KT1gP0ZTb4v6g/www.youtube.com/watch?v=gzvduDVjdyA   We, Syrian writers, endorsing the previous call that our friends the filmmakers addressed to their colleagues in the world, are addressing this call for … Read more A Call from Syrian Writers