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Beyond Authenticity: ISIS and the Islamic Legal Tradition Arabian Peninsula Roundup Syrian Refugees Collectivizing in Jordan Becomes a Security Issue New Texts Out Now: Smadar Lavie, Wrapped in the Flag of Israel: Mizrahi Single Mothers and Bureaucratic Torture Bio-Istanbul

ستاتوس\الوضع: العدد 2.1

يسرنا أن نعلن صدور العدد الثاني من مجلة "ستاتوس\الوضع" الصوتية. "ستاتوس\الوضع" مجلة صوتية مستقلة، تعاونية ونقدية وناشئة، تصدر شهرياً وتجمع بين التحليل والتغطية الأخبارية والسخرية. تنشر مقابلات\محادثات وتقارير ميدانية ...

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موسى أساريد: أربعة نصوص

              -I- روح الصحراء تُفَسّر إحدى الأساطير الرّائعة سببَ بقاء ...

Galliny, uncle of Gerges Samir, 20, and Malak Ibrahim, 25.

Minyan Village Mourns: A Photographic Essay

Between agony and happiness, the village of Al-Aour in the Egyptian governorate of Minya received the news that thirteen of its sons were among the twenty-one Egyptian Christians recently beheaded by the Islamic State (IS) organization in ...

[Azaz, Syria. Photo via Wikimedia.]

Cities Media Roundup (February 2015)

[This is a monthly roundup of news articles, and other materials related to urban issues in the region, and beyond. It does not reflect the views of the Cities Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send recommendations for inclusion in the ...


Quick Thoughts: Paul Sedra on the IS Massacre of Egyptian Copts in Libya

[Still shot of the blood of victims mixing with the sea water from the video allegedly depicting the execution of twenty-one Copts at the hands of IS]

Among the most important points to make about these horrific murders relates to context. I would argue this event cannot and should not be placed within the context of domestic Egyptian politics or of Muslim-Christian relations in Egypt. Without question, Egypt has a persistent problem with sectarianism and violence against Egypt’s Coptic community. But these latest sectarian murders represent an effort by the Islamic State (IS) movement to advance its transnational agenda rather than an Egyptian one. Its reference to “conquering Rome” in the video of these murders–even though the Egyptian Coptic Orthodox Church has for centuries pursued a path entirely separate from ...

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Maghreb Media Roundup (February 16)

[Image of fishermen in Essaouira, Morocco. Image by Tiberio Frascari/Flickr]

[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on the Maghreb and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the Maghreb Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each week's roundup to maghreb@jadaliyya.com by Thursday night of every week] Algeria Algeria’s Sonatrach to press on with shale gas exploration: CEO Algeria’s government-owned hydrocarbon company will complete its first shale gas pilot well in a few days and plans to continue exploration near In Salah despite local protests. Algeria’s Silver Lining Lies Sahar argues that Algeria may be able to weather ...

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Cairo Downtown Passages Redesign

The Cairo Laboratory for Urban Studies and Environmental Research (CLUSTER) has been exploring the network of Cairo’s downtown passages for almost three years. as CLUSTER co-founder Omar Nagati explains that they see the passageways as an 'in-between' space that allows for unique possibilities for the development and revitalization of the city center. Their interest also stems from hopes to engage the public more with existing arts and culture spaces, as curator and CLUSTER co-founder Beth Stryker tells Medrar.TV. For a pilot phase, supported by the Center for Culture and Development (CKU) and the Danish Egyptian Dialogue Institute (DEDI), CLUSTER ...

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Could Cantonizing Palestine Bring Peace?

[A boy displays a sign that reads “This is our land!” during a vigil to mark Land Day in the unrecognized Bedouin village of Wadi al-Naam in present-day Israel, 30 March 2012. Bedouins in the southern Naqab region have resisted decades of ongoing, forced displacement by Israeli authorities. Image by Keren Manor via ActiveStills]

An interesting plan for dividing Israel into provinces was published a few months ago by Haaretz. It suggested a remedy for the fragmentation of Israeli society and its failure to create a melting pot for Jews immigrating to Palestine. In this article I provide a critique of the pros and cons of this plan and offer an alternative. The scheme, laid out by Carlo Strenger and Judd Yadid in a 7 October 2014 article entitled “How Cantonization can save Israel,” admits that Israel’s leaders failed “to impose a monolithic ideological and cultural hegemony on the country’s population.” The Ultra-Orthodox Jews, for example, were not “converted into card-carrying Zionists.” ...

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The Vagaries of Laïcité

[Detail from the cover of Naomi Davidson,

[This is the second of three responses to Muriam Haleh Davis’ review essay of books by Joan W. Scott, Naomi Davidson, and Mayanthi Fernando. For Joan W. Scott’s response, “More on Laïcité in Historical Context," click here.] A cartoon by the French cartoonist Gil from 10 January, titled “Communion nationale,” shows a white policeman frisking an ambiguously raced man standing against the wall with his hands in the air. “Je suis Charlie,” says the man, and the policeman replies, “Yeah, yeah, me too.” In the past month, many of us have seen an explosion of items in the French press about Muslims (be they radical/homegrown/foreign/prisoners/mentally ...

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Who Are the People? A Conversation on the Assemblages and the Archives of the People

[Photo by Virginie Nguyen courtesy of Mada Masr]

Scholars of the Middle East have grappled for several decades with what seemed to be the death of “formal” or “official” politics in their attempt to explain the seemingly impenetrable force of authoritarianism and the pacification of Arab politics. Some work reified older understandings of the idea of agency and the centrality of state institutions. Others broke new ground on the idea of the individual, critically deconstructing the seemingly self-evident meaning and universal values of “freedom” and “agency.” In some ways, both conventional and cutting edge approaches worked to obscure the possibility of politics that could effectively challenge authoritarian ...

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Jadaliyya Monthly Edition (January 2015)

This is a selection of what you might have missed on Jadaliyya during the month of January 2015. It also includes the most recent roundups, editors picks, and most read articles. Progressively, we will be featuring more content on our Monthly Edition series.  بيان مشترك لمؤسسات ومحلات في شارع الحمرا (بيروت) رداً على مقال جريدة النهار Charlie Hebdo and the Limits of the Republic The Dramaturgy of A Street Corner بيان مقهى التـاء مربوطـة في بيروت ردا على مقال جريدة النهار Charlie Hebdo et les limites de la République Evolution and Debates about the Concept of Terrorism Keep Reading »

ISIS Kills Gays: A History of Violence

[Fighters belonging to the Islamic State group in Anbar, Iraq. Image by Wikimedia Commons User Ritsaiph.]

Hands shove them forward, bound and blindfolded. Then comes the step when the stone beneath them stops and nothing is there. The photographs appall but they have the solidity of things you can see; they suggest but cannot summon the feel of one terrifying lurch in darkness when all that is solid falls away. Death is what happens when you are there, alone, and the world disappears. ISIS stands for the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, which now styles itself just the Islamic State. Many Arabs prefer to call it Da’ish, an acronym (Ad-Dawlah al-Islamiyah fi al-‘Iraq wash-Sham) that the militants despise, partly because it echoes Arabic words for ...

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الأقلام: ذاكرة أخرى لثقافة في العراق

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ترى كم تاريخٍاً للثقافة في العراق "وهل العراق بدع من البلدان ليكون له تواريخ ثقافية عديدة!؟" شخصياً لا أدري؛ مادام أن للثقافة تاريخياً شخصياً: تاريخ أفراد بعينهم، كثيرون يعضون على نواجذهم قائلين، لأنفسهم ربما، أن الثقافة شان ذاتي، بول ريكور، مثلاً، يشدد في مدونته الكبرى، أن الذاكرة شان السرد، إنما تتعلق بذات تتكلم وتتذكر وتحكي، لكنه لم يقل مطلقاً: اننا أمام طوفان من التواريخ، لكني أرى، للأسف، ان الثقافة ربما تكون سجلاً ضخماً يشكل، بمجموعه، طوفاناً من التواريخ الشخصية للمثقفين في العراق. أتصور أننا، هنا، إزاء سيل عارم من الأمزجة والمصائر الشخصية التي تدعي، بحق أو سواه، أنها بصدد إنتاج الثقافة في بلادنا. السنوات السالفة، بدء من 9، 4 تكشف عن ترسخ هكذا توجه؛ ...

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Egypt Media Roundup (February 9)

[Photo by Sarah Carr via Flickr]

[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on Egypt and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the Egypt Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each week's roundup to egypt@jadaliyya.com by Sunday night of every week.]  Regional and International Relations French Defense Minister Confirms Rafale Talks with Egypt: TV Jean-Yves le Drian, French Defense Minister, confirms that “advanced” talks are underway with Egypt over the purchase of twenty-four Rafale jets and a Fremme frigate from a French defense firm. The deal is estimated at 5 billion euros, i.e. from 5.7 ...

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Justice: An Uncertain Question in Turkey

[Protesters hold a banner with images of those killed in the Gezi Protests, reading

On 3 June 2013, Ali Ismail Korkmaz, a nineteen-year old university student in Eskisehir, was participating in nonviolent peaceful protests against the Turkish government when he was brutally clubbed and beaten by a group of police officers and civilians. The protestors were demanding the retraction of an urban development plan for Gezi Park in Istanbul that required the demolition of the only green area in the heart of the city. The wave of protests quickly spread to all of Turkey. On the day he was attacked, Ali Ismail Korkmaz was ironically wearing a t-shirt that read “world peace,” representing the humane spirit of the Gezi Protests. Shortly after the brutal attack, ...

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الفيلسوف طريد المدن الموحشة: عبد الله القصيمي الجزء الثاني

[عبدالله القصيمي]

الفيلسوف طريد المدن الموحشة: عبد الله القصيمي (1907-1996) الذي طعن عرب القرن العشرين ف خاصرتهم.  (الجزء الثاني)   [انقر/ي هنا لقراءة الجزء الأول من المقال] القصيمي شاعراً تائهاً وفي الفصل السادس يولي المؤلف إبراهيم عبد الرحمن الإنتاج الشعري الذي قدمه القصيمي، ولم يلتفت إليه بوصفه تجربة مستقلة. وإنما استخدم القصيمي الشعر لتمرير أفكاراً مختلفة، فهو نشر قبل أي كتاب في جريدة الرياض الأسبوعية قصيدة في تمجيد البطل "نفثة مخلص: إلى حضرة صاحب الجلالة عبد العزيز ملك الحجاز ونجد وملحقاتها" (1930). مطلعها: "وقفت بالدار أجري الدمع والجزعا  على طلول أهيل جرعوا الضبعا" وقد افتتح كتابه "البروق النجدية في اكتشاح الظلمات ...

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Egypt Media Roundup (February 16)

[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on Egypt and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the Egypt Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each week's roundup to egypt@jadaliyya.com by Sunday night of every week.]  Regional and International Relations Update: Egyptian Airstrikes Significant, but More Action Needed: Analyst Mada Masr reports on Egyptian-Libyan coordinated airstrikes targeting ...

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Bio-Istanbul: A Speculative, Segregationist, and Sustainable Urbanism

Ekolojik (ecological), yeşil (green), doğal (natural), or akıllı (smart): these are the new concepts increasingly emphasized in brochures advertising real estate projects in Istanbul. Stamped with the seal of “sustainability” (sürdürülebilirlik), a terminology that signalled its entry into the vocabulary of Turkey’s urban policies in the early 2000s (Pérouse 2011), do these projects really reflect new forms of urban design and spatial production in the metropolis of Istanbul? In order to ...

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Manufacturing Silence: On Jordan's ISIS War, Arab Authoritarianism, and US Empire

On 24 December 2014, ISIS reported and the US-led coalition confirmed that a Jordanian fighter pilot, Mu‘ath al-Kassasbeh, had crashed in Syria and was now in ISIS custody. On 3 February 2015, ISIS released a video showing its own members murdering the pilot by immolation. The Jordanian regime vowed revenge. Some Jordanians took to the streets in grief and anger. The Jordanian Armed Forces, for its part, intensified its bombing campaign in Syria. Media outlets and Middle East analysts have expended ...

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Rami Abadir and Mostafa El-Sayed: On 'Shawakish' Album

In early 2014, Cairo based musicians Rami Abadir and Mostafa El Sayed decided to jam together. They had known one another for a few years and shared a passion for using synthesizers and analog technologies in their music production. The result of this improvisation session was different from the music they played individually. So they decided to push it further and start performing live, while continuing to develop it. Almost a year later, they launched ‘Shawakish’ (Hammers), their first album together ...

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Al-Wihdat Refugee Camp: Between Inclusion and Exclusion

Drawing on the influential writing of Arendt, Foucault, and Agamben, much of the literature on refugees and refugee camps has generally emphasized the liminality and extraordinariness of the space of the camp. Camps have often been juxtaposed to the city. Whereas the latter has come to represent normality, the camp has been portrayed as the site of hardened national identities and political ideologies or, conversely, as a place of confinement for speechless victims. This approach might result in ...

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New Texts Out Now: Elisabeth Anker, Orgies of Feeling: Melodrama and the Politics of Freedom

Elisabeth R. Anker, Orgies of Feeling: Melodrama and the Politics of Freedom. Durham: Duke University Press, 2014. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Elisabeth Anker (EA): There are two answers to this question. The first is political: the idea for the book came out of anger at both the extensively violent response by the US to the 9/11 events, and the widespread support given to these operations by a vast majority of the US populace. I wondered why a narrative of good and evil mobilized ...

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Becoming a 'Media Intellectual': The Platitudes and Partisanships of Etyen Mahçupyan

As politics in contemporary Turkey is gradually steered towards a de facto Imperial Presidency shrouded in regurgitated myths of Ottoman revivalism and defended against ostentatious conspiracies, it is easy to be sucked into the extreme polarization between the pro- and anti-government positions. It is also easy to take for granted the operation of a complex world of opinion production behind all the fuss. Those of us following political news in Turkey are always exposed to written, spoken, or gestured ...

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Arabian Peninsula Media Roundup (February 10)

[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on the Arabian Peninsula and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the Arabian Peninsula Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each week's roundup to ap@jadaliyya.com by Monday night of every week.] Regional and International Relations  Moussaoui claims Saudi royals ‘funded 9/11 attacks’ Zacarias Moussaoui claims that members of the Saudi ruling ...

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Turkey Media Roundup (February 10)

[This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on Turkey and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the Turkey Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each week's roundup to turkey@jadaliyya.com by Sunday night of every week.] English AKP, Security, Authoritarianism The World Says, "Your King Is Naked" Examining recent reports on Turkey by Human Rights Watch, Ali H. Aslan argues that the ...

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Last Week on Jadaliyya (February 2-8)

This is a selection of what you might have missed on Jadaliyya last week. It also includes a list of the most read articles and roundups. Progressively, we will be featuring more content on our "Last Week on Jadaliyya" series.  Do Muslims Belong in the West? An Interview with Talal Asad More on Laïcité in Historical Context Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions: Myths and Realities Machiavelli in the Twenty-First Century: Sudanese Security Leaks in ...

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Dead Sea Living

Dead Sea Living, directed by German Gutierrez. Canada/France/Palestine, 2013. Although the Dead Sea has no life, it provides living through the rich minerals extracted from it. Yet the flood of water into the Dead Sea is slowly receding. It has witnessed a ninety-foot drop in only thirty years on a lake that is just sixty-seven kilometers long and twenty kilometers wide. At this rate, the Dead Sea will bottom out as a small pond in about fifty years. German Gutierrez’s film Dead Sea Living depicts the ...

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دور النشر السورية: مأساة الورق والحبر والدم

لا يغيب الناشر السوري عن سوق الكتب العربية في معظم معارضها؛ لكنه غائبٌ بشكلٍ شبه تام عن بلاده؛ مرغماً لا بطل؛ فالكتب في دمشق وحلب وحمص واللاذقية وسواها من المدن تعوم على الأرصفة والأكشاك والشاحنات؛ كتبٌ لبشرٍ ماتوا أو هُجِّروا أو نزحوا عن مدنهم؛ تاركين وراءهم بيوتهم ومكتباتهم ودور نشرهم وأحلامهم؛ ومن قال أن الكتب ليس لها استخداماتٌ أخرى في زمن الحرب؛ هكذا على الأقل صنعت منها الممثلة الفرنسية جولييت بينوش درجاً بدل الأدراج المهترئة في فيلم " المريض الإنكليزي" الذي لعبت بطولته عن رواية مايكل ...

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