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أشباح سركون بولص

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”كرسي جدي ما زال يهتزّ على أسوار أوروك  تحته يعبر النهر، يتقلّب فيه الأحياء والموتى“  سركون بولص، ”عظمة أخرى لكلب القبيلة“ يتجاور الأحياء والموتى بشكل ملفت للنظر في ديوان سركون بولص الأخير ”عظمة أخرى لكلب القبيلة.“ فنراهم يتقلبون في النهر الذي يجري على أول صفحة فيه. ويعاودون الظهور، سوية، في عدد من قصائد الديوان الأخرى:  ”الأحياء والأموات تفاهموا/على الارتماء في حضن السكينة.“. . .”إنه نفس الفراغ الطالع/من حضرة آخر الليل في أية مدينة/متخمة بالأحياء والموتى: باريس، لندن، نيويورك.. . .”فلا أحد وراءه، غير هذا الميت الحي/الموزّع بين بينٍ في أناه، بلا أنا.“ وحتّى آخر صفحة في الديوان، حيث نقرأ: ”يا لها من رحلة./الميّت والحي ضيوف في حانة ...

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عن سركون بولص في ذكراه

[صلاح فائق مع سركون بولص. الصورة من أرشيف صلاح فائق]

آخر مرة التقيتُ سركون كان في بداية العام 1966، في بغداد. ذهبنا الى مطعم صغير في البتاويين وبعده الى معرضٍ  للرسم في المعهد الثقافي الفرنسي. افترقنا وأنا أعرف بأنه سيغادر العراق، أو يهرب، لينهي عذابه من تجنيده في الجيش وبقائه عاطلاً عن أية وظيفة أو استخدام، في أجهزة الإعلام الرسمية أو الاهلية، وفي غيرهما، سواءً في كركوك أو في بغداد. لم تفده شهرته آنذاك كشاعر طليعي ومختلف، أظهرهما بنشاط في أعمال نشرها، وتراجم أنجزها، سواءً في العراق أو في لبنان من خلال مجلة شعر، بل ربما أثارت بعض المشاعر المعادية والاتهامات ضده، خصوصاً وأن الوسط الاعلامي والثقافي العراقي كانا يعجان آنذاك بالأفكار العروبية واشتراكيتها، وأقصد الفترة الناصرية واتحادها الاشتراكي وشعاراتها الطوباوية في حل ...

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Citizenfour: Laura Poitras’ Documentary on Edward Snowden (Video Trailer)

[Screen shot from YouTube]

The following trailer is for Laura Poitras' Citizefour, which is scheduled for release on 24 October 2014.  

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Call for Applicants: Director of Women and Gender Studies (American University of Beirut)

The American University of Beirut invites applicants for a position in gender and sexuality studies, preferably at the associate or full professor level, to begin fall 2015. The successful applicant will serve as director of the new Women and Gender Studies Program at the American University of Beirut and work to coordinate the development of gender and sexuality studies as a specific research concentration, as well as a transdisciplinary formation distributed across multiple departments and faculties. We seek candidates with demonstrated teaching, research, and administrative experience; as well as applicants whose research engages feminist approaches to the study of ...

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Hashem L Kelesh

[Screenshot from video below.]

 Egyptian visual artist and musician, Hashem L Kelesh's online presence is even stronger than in the real world. He studied art history and musical composition online, on his own. And he continues to do so, substituting for Egypt's archaic formal art education programs.  From his flat in suburban Cairo, Kelesh has also been drawing, painting, making music and posting it all online. When it came to his street art, he handed out his stencil designs for others to spray on the city walls.  His inspirations come from online interactions, and he posts the work on his Facebook page, Tumblr blog and SoundCloud. The feedback he gets from his ...

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المنفى يُولد الآن

[صورة للشاعر أسامة أسبر]

  المنفى يُولد الآن               وأنْتِ في أنْفاسي أشعرُ أنني تمثالُ ثَلْجٍ على مدخل دمشق، عيناه مُطْبقتان أنفه يتنفّس الغضب أذناه متآلفتان مع ضجيج الموت فمه عاجزٌ عن النّطق يحاول أن يقول: أيتها الثلوج الدم منفيٌّ

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حل لغز كتابة رُقَم دير علا من القرن الثالث عشر قبل الميلاد

يقع (تل دير علا) في الأغوار الوسطى شرقي نهر الأردن.  وفي الرابع عشر من إبريل 1964 أعلن H.J. Franken  مدير حفريات هذا التل عن اكتشاف عدد من الرقم الطينية في الموقع تعود إلى نهاية العصر البرونزي المتأخر، أي إلى نهايات القرن الثالث عشر ق.م. ثلاث من هذه الرقم تحمل كتابة خطت على اللوح الطيني ساعة كان طريا. أما الباقي فقد كان يحمل مجرد نقاط لا يعرف معناها، وإن كان بعضهم يعتقد أنها أرقام حسابية. اللغة التي كتبت بها هذه (النقوش) ظلت غير معروفة، كما ألفباؤها ظلت عصية حتى الآن. وفي حفريات عام 1994 و2004 جرى العثور على عدد آخر من الرقم (1). بالتالي، صار يمكن الطمع في فك ألغاز هذه الكتابة. صحيح أن النصوص ما زالت ضئيلة الحجم، حتى بعد المكتشفات الأخيرة، لكننا صرنا على الأقل ...

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Call for Applicants: Tenure-Track Assistant Professor of Arabic (George Mason University)

Tenure-Track Assistant Professor of Arabic The George Mason University, Department of Modern and Classical Languages (Fairfax, Va.) invites applications for a Tenure-Track Assistant Professor of Arabic beginning August 2015.  Department: Modern/Classical Languages Criminal Background Check: Standard Background Check Job Category: Instructional or Research Faculty Role (State) Job Title: Tenure-Track Assistant Professor of Arabic Working Title: Tenure-Track Assistant Professor of Arabic Job Type: Full-Time Position Number: F8436z Recruit Number: Faculty - 6233 Location: Fairfax Salary: Commensurate with education and ...

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Maha Maamoun: Lingering in Vicinity

[Image from video below]

February - March 2014 Gypsum Gallery, Cairo Maha Maamoun's solo exhibition at Gypsum Gallery brings together two works she produced within the span of ten years. Cairoscapes (2003) is a series of large-scale horizontal photographs and Shooting Stars Remind me of Eavesdroppers (2013) is Maamoun’s most recent single-channel video. Seen together, the two works propose aesthetic, formal, and conceptual threads that run through Maamoun’s practice. Maamoun’s videos and photographs often address the form and function of images that are found in mainstream culture. Her work acts as a lens through which audiences might see familiar images in novel and ...

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Displaced Intentions

[Still image from

Write Down, I Am an Arab, directed by Ibtisam Mara’ana-Menuhin. Israel/Palestine, 2014. Borrowing the opening line of one of Mahmoud Darwish’s most famous poems, “Identity Card,” filmmaker Ibtisam Mara’ana-Menuhin titled her latest documentary Write Down, I Am an Arab. The film, which had its world premiere at Toronto’s Hot Docs festival in April of this year, is described as a biographical portrait of the poet who became the voice of Palestinian people. However, in her director’s statement, the filmmaker discloses an ulterior motive behind making the documentary. She writes, “The film reveals for the first time, the story of Mahmoud Darwish’s first love—a ...

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El Rass

[Image from video below.]

November 2013 Beirut, Lebanon Over the past three years, Mazen El Sayed, aka El Rass, has risen to the forefront of the contemporary Arab hip-hop scene. He stood out, along with a few others, for his focus on the Arabic language and poignant criticism of contemporary societies. Whereas hip-hop might have been his starting point, El Rass (meaning The Head) managed to expand beyond it to other genres, and is quick to assert that he is not limited by any one of them.  In late 2013, Medrar.TV visited El Rass in his Beirut studio, where he worked on his second album featuring a range of Arab musicians. In this interview, El Rass speaks of his beginnings and ...

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Ghassan Salhab: Making of 'The Valley'

[Image from video below]

November 2013 Al Beqaa, Lebanon In November, Lebanese director Ghassan Salhab was busy with his crew, filming 'The Valley', the second film in his triptych inspired by long suffering in Lebanon's modern history, which he compares to feelings of an eminent apocalypse. The film was shot on a vine farm in Al Beqaa region on the border with Syria. In this video interview, Salhab talks of his conceptual approaches to filmmaking in general and in relation to 'The Valley' which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in September 2014. Ghassan Salhab was born in Dakar, Senegal, and teaches film at the Lebanese Academy of Fine Arts. Along with several ...

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ذكريات صغيرة عن سركون بولص

أخذتُ قبل بدايات التسعينات أتبادل الرسائل مع سركون بولص المقيم في سان فرنسيسكو في الولايات المتحدة الأمريكية، كنّا نتحدث على الأغلب في رسائلنا عن الماضي الخاص بسركون والذي أعرف بعضه بشكل غامض، وهو يصحح لي هنا وهناك، وبالطبع كان حديثنا الأهم عن نشر قصائده، لكن الأمور سارت بوتيرة غير الوتيرة التي أرادها سركون لمراسلاتنا، وهو معروف عنه البطء، والكسل وتأجيل انجاز المشاريع لآلاف المرات، لكن الأمور، كما قلتُ سارت بوتيرة مغايرة حينما احتل صدام حسين دولة الكويت، وإذا بي وجهاً لوجه مع سركون بولص ببرلين وقد قدمنا ...

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Hydrogen Senior Project Exhibition

May 2014 Sharjah Art Gallery, American University in Cairo, Cairo "Hydrogen" is the 2014 senior student exhibition of the American University in Cairo's Visual Cultures Program. The exhibition presents seventeen projects produced throughout the year and is curated by Visual Artist and AUC Professor Shady Elnoshokaty. The theme for this year's exhibition is Hydrogen, a basic element whose transformative capacities make it the substance of the most destructive weapon humankind has created: ...

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Hassan Khan in Conversation with Mohamed Abdelkarim

April-May 2014 Downtown Contemporary Arts Festival (D-CAF), Cairo For his first major solo show in Egypt in over ten years, Medrar.TV invited artist and filmmaker Mohamed Abdelkarim to discuss with Hassan Khan the exhibition and development of his practice over the past two decades. Khan is among the major Egyptian contemporary artists, writers  and musicians and was jury head at the 54th Venice Biennale. The exhibition was curated by Beth Stryker of the Cairo Lab for Urban Studies, ...

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London Palestine Film Festival (28 November - 11 December, 2014)

From November 28th to December 11th 2014, the London Palestine Film Festival (LPFF) returns with the finest new docs, dramas, and shorts on and from the region. Festival programme: palestinefilm.org  The two week programme, at the Barbican Cinema and University of London venues, showcases over 40 international titles accompanied by director Q&As, panel discussions, and research presentations. Along with hard-hitting docs and political thrillers, audiences can expect comedies, family-friendly ...

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Alaa Abd El Hamid: Visual Lab Rats

June - July 2014 Medrar for Contemporary Art, Cairo Cairo-based sculptor Alaa Abd El Hamid attempts to incorporate viewers into his latest exhibition. Through a series of mirrored objects, placed around the gallery space, a photograph and a laser show, he hopes they would reflect on their relation to their surrounding and one another. The shape of the pyramid is a recurring motif in the exhibition as Abd El Hamid notes in this video interview. The artist wished to explore how the ancient Egyptian ...

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Samir Nabil (Object Obscure)

February 2014 Alexandria, Egypt Object Obscure is a music project/band fronted by Alexandrian musician and sound engineer Samir Nabil. His music is guitar-based, utilizing live looping and other sound layering and manipulating techniques, using various guitar effect pedals, while maintaining a strong melodic content. Nabil started his music career by composing Indie music and pop and moved on to instrumental. In addition to the tracks he publishes on his soundcloud, Nabil occasionally performs ...

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Book Launch Event--Creative Refuge: Art-based Research Workshops with Children in Palestinian Refugee Camps (Beirut, 10 October 2014)

Creative Refuge book launch

 Febrik requests the pleasure of your company at the launch of: Creative Refuge  A publication edited by Reem Charif, Mohamad Hafeda and Joumana al Jabri.  Published by Tadween publishing – 2014.

 Friday 10th October, 6.30–8.30pm at T-Marbouta café
 Hamra Square Center, Hamra Str, Beirut. Creative Refuge brings forward the experience of three workshops (2003-2005) working with children at Beit Atfal Assomoud, Burj El Barajne Palestinian ...

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The Legacy of Turkish in the Armenian Diaspora

There we sat, the proverbial Turk and Armenian, at neighboring tables in a university student center in New Jersey. My back to his, I drew my eyes out of the book I was reading to concentrate on the voice behind me. The gliding vowels of Turkish always sound familiar in the split second it takes for my brain to mark the language as unknown. As the man shouted into his cellphone, unaware of the aspiring eavesdropper nearby, a surge of recognition startled me each time I managed to catch a hiç or a hemen. ...

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Fourth Annual DC Palestinian Film and Arts Festival: October 2-5, 2014

The Arab Studies Institute is happy to announce it's sponsorship of the 2014 DC Palestinian Film & Arts Festival CLICK HERE TO BUY TICKETS  2014 Program of Films and Events:    Thursday October 2, 2014: Stories for Justice: Visualizing Palestine Exhibit and Opening Reception  Join us for the opening reception of the fourth annual DC Palestinian Film & Arts Festival, featuring the work of Vizualizing Palestine. Visualizing Palestine uses creative visuals to describe ...

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When Your Name is on the Blacklist

[The Gallatin School of New York University invited Amjad Nasser, one of the major poets of the Arab world, to inaugurate its Gallatin Global Writers series on 30 September. On 27 September, US Homeland Security at Heathrow, London, interrogated Nasser and prevented him from boarding the plane without giving any reason. The bilingual reading will take place as scheduled in protest of this occurrence. Nasser will join from London via Skype. The following is the essay Nasser wrote after the incident. It is ...

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Excavating the Sky

[Between 12-14 August 2014 at the 14th Venice International Architecture Biennale, architects, filmmakers, and activists from Syria and the Arab World, gathered for a series of events focused on Syria and the production of its landscape from before the First World War until today. Using the multidisciplinary and live context of Monditalia—curated by the Biennale’s director Rem Koolhaas and architect Ippolito Pestellini—Syrian architect Khaled Malas organized the project “Excavating the Sky.” Jadaliyya ...

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On Dead and Living Characters

Maha George is a young Iraqi Christian woman from Baghdad in her early twenties. I came to know Maha and her family quite well three and a half years ago. She was studying medicine in Baghdad at the time, but had no plans for staying in Iraq. She, like so many, no longer believed that Iraq was her country and planned on immigrating as soon as she finished her studies. The recent events in Mosul and the catastrophic fate of hundreds of thousands of Iraqis (Christians, Yazidis, Shabak, and others) have ...

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