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New Texts Out Now: Luca Anceschi, Gennaro Gervasio, and Andrea Teti, Informal Power in the Greater Middle East Against All Odds Voices of Popular Struggle In Iraq It's Official: In 2006, The Lebanese Government Was Hoping Israel Would Disarm Hezbollah For them Tripoli’s Unseen Faces الجسد والسلطة في السينما
[A protest for Palestine in Porto Alegre, Brazil, on 29 March 2012. Image by author.]

Palestinian Authority Security Cooperation and the Internationalization of Occupation: The Case of Ahmad Sa’adat

“Security coordination is sacred.” Palestinian Authority (PA) president Mahmoud Abbas made that statement in Ramallah in May 2014 to an Israeli audience. He was referring to the policy of high-level intelligence and security cooperation ...

[Beirut Downtown by Abdsayady92 via WikiCommons]

Cities Media Roundup (January 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 ...

[Cover of Toby Matthiesen,

New Texts Out Now: Toby Matthiesen, The Other Saudis: Shiism, Dissent, and Sectarianism

Toby Matthiesen, The Other Saudis: Shiism, Dissent, and Sectarianism. Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press, 2015. Jadaliyya (J): What made you write this book? Toby Matthiesen (TM): I became interested in the issue of ...

[Image of zajal performance in Byblos from The Times of Malta]

Zajal on Arak

I remember when electricity came to my village. I must have been about seven or eight.  The government installed a transformer in the village center. The thing was housed in a metal locker. The villagers called it ‘The Clock.’  ...


DARS Media Roundup (December 2014)

[Tear gas canisters, shot by the Israeli army during protest in the West Bank, are displayed on a tree during Christmas eve celebrations outside the Church of the Nativity, Bethlehem, 24 December 2014. Image by Activestills, via Flickr.]

[This is a monthly roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on Resistance and Subversion in the Arab world and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the DARS Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each monthly roundup to DARS@jadaliyya.com.] News & Commentary In 2014, People Power Took on the State in a Battle for Minds and Streets, by Natalie Nougayrède In the last year, the question of people power versus state hard power became more prominent. From Russia’s actions in Ukraine to Burkina Faso’s overthrow of a president whose rule had lasted twenty-seven years, from Hong ...

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Cities Media Roundup (December 2014)

[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 Cities Media Roundup to cities@jadaliyya.com, mentioning "Roundup" in the subject line. We also welcome your submissions to the Cities Page: please check details on cities.jadaliyya.com]    Urban and Real Estate Development   Public Land for Sale in Lebanon [In Arabic] Firas Abou-Mosleh reports in Al Akhabr on the corruption in the real-estate office and land registry of the Lebanese ministry of Finance, ...

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Turkey Media Roundup (December 30)

[Demonstration in Istanbul commemorating the of Uludere massacre. Image by Fulya Atalay / Shutterstock.com]

[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 Zaman Newspaper Raid An Outcry by Intellectuals Bülent Keneş welcomes the statement made by intellectuals, which framed the police raids and detentions of journalists as amounting to a "coup against the freedom of the press as well as against Turkey's democratic future" as a “silver lining.” WikiLeaks Sheds Light on Turkey’s ...

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Cairo Past Futures

“Cairo Past Futures” consists of twenty-four photographs, each combined with a headline extracted from the Egyptian press of the 1950s and 60s. Headlines like “This is Tomorrow’s Cairo” and “Urban Planning in the Era of Revolution” are superimposed on images of contemporary Cairo depicting scenes such as speculative informal housing properties on the edge of Giza and dilapidated social housing blocks in Bulaq. These two-layer montages combining text and image put to the test past promises about the city’s future pronounced in state-censored magazines and newspapers during the Gamal Abdel Nasser regime. After the 1952 coup d’état in Egypt by Nasser and other Free ...

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Yemen's Time of Turmoil (New Issue of Middle East Report)

Midway through Barack Obama’s second term as president, there are two Establishment-approved metanarratives about his foreign policy. One, emanating mainly from the right, but resonating with several liberal internationalists, holds that Obama is unequal to the task of running an empire. The president, pundits repeat, is a “reluctant warrior” who declines to intervene abroad with the alacrity becoming his station. The other, quieter line of argument posits that Obama is the consummate realist, a man who avoids foreign entanglements unless or until they impinge directly upon vital US interests. As usual, the mainstream assessments are more interesting for their unspoken ...

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Last Week on Jadaliyya (December 22-28)

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.      Requiem for Tunisia’s Revolution? Open Letter to Mr. Rem Koolhaas مومس السياب وأيامي العمياء The Politics of "Unveiling Saudi Women": Between Postcolonial Fantasies and the Surveillance State Badr Shakir al-Sayyab: Fifty Years On Al-Sayyab: Two Poems The Islamic State: The Fear of Decline? سجن النساء يجتاز اختبار بكدال ويتجاوزه Keep Reading »

Egypt Media Roundup (December 29)

[31 January 2012, police shut down all roads leading to the parliament. Photo by Hossam el-Hamalawy 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 Donations for Gaza Reconstruction Stalled Due to “Lack of Trust” in Negotiations—Egyptian Ministers Aswat Masriya reports.   Egypt and France Sign Protocol to Finance Taba Airport Egypt Independent reports.   Egypt-China: Meeting of Civilizations, Principles and Interests  Ahmed al-Sayyed ...

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رسالة تضامن من فلسطين إلى الأميركيين من أصل أفريقي في الولايات المتحدة

[

9.12.2014 أخواتي وإخوتي، من داخل جدران السجن الإسرائيلي، وبصفتي من أسرى الحرية السياسيين الفلسطينيين، أعبّر عن تعاطفي  معكم وتضامني الكامل. كما أعبّر عن شديد إعجابي واحترامي وتقديري لصوتكم وللطريقة التي ترفعوه بها في تظاهرات غضبكم الإنساني واحتجاجكم ونضالكم لحماية حياتكم وكرامتكم الإنسانية واقتلاع العنصرية. سلامي وتحياتي لكل مساندي نضالكم سواء الأميركيين أم من كافة أنحاء العالم. إن قضيتكم تلامس قلوب جميع الناس في كل مكان. كما وأن احتجاجكم هو نيابة عن الإنسانية جمعاء.. إن صوتكم هو صوتنا.. إنه صوت جميع الأحرار في العالم. إنني أبعث بالتعازي إلى العائلات وإلى أولئك الذين سقط أقرباؤهم وأحباؤهم ضحايا السهولة العنصرية المتناهية في إطلاق الرصاص والخنق. وحتى نحن ...

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Badr Shakir al-Sayyab: Fifty Years On

[Youth washing Sayyab's statue in Basra, image from pukmedia.com]

The great Iraqi poet Badr Shakir al-Sayyab died fifty years ago today, on December 24, 1964. During his short life, Sayyab changed the language and form of Arabic poetry for good: in part, by breaking centuries' old meters and remaking the rhythms of verse; in part, by engaging intensely with a number of traditions and world literatures at the same time; and always, by engaging with the political, cultural and social dynamics of the moment he lived in. During his early years, Sayyab carried on a lively conversation with a long line of Arab poets that had come before him. During the 1950s, he grappled with the form of modern English poetry and translated it into an idiom ...

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Badr Shakir Al-Sayyab: The Poem and the Phoenix

[Image of a young Sayyab delivering poem, from shakwmakw.com]

From the new room, my bier calls on me to write a poem. So I write what’s in my blood, and I cross out until the unruly idea gives in. My new room is spacious, more spacious than my grave. If fatigue descends over wakefulness, sleep is sweeter— springing up even from eyes of stone, even from the lonely fireplace set up in the far corner. Then the dry, dilapidated bier lifts up its head and gazes at the walls, the ceiling, the mirror, and the vials. How dark the corners are, as earth is to man it wants to shatter him with money, wine, women, and lies on the heart and tongue it wants to send him back into the dim forest. The surface of the mirror ...

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Badr Shakir Al-Sayyab: Three Letters

[Image of Sayyab, from Al-Safir Newspaper]

[Sayyab's correspondence contains some of his most profound statements on poetry, modernity and contemporary politics of the era. Here, we present to you three letters, addressed to Suhayl Idris, Yusuf al-Khal, and Adonis, respectively.] 3/25/1954 To My Brother Dr. Suhayl Idris: Greetings! The letter that you just sent to me has left an indelible impression on my soul. It is yet another witness to the nobility of your soul, the greatness of your heart and the sincerity of your personal pledge to serve all Arabs and lead their current literary endeavors toward the light. I read it to a considerate audience, a select few of the local literati, all lovers of literature, ...

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السياب.. جدول النواح

الشاعر العراقي بدر شاكر السياب]

(1) لم أتعرّف على شعر بدر شاكر السياب إلا من باب التدرّب، كنت فتى في الخامسة عشر من عمره يحاول أن يكون ممثلاً مسرحيّاً، ولم يختر مدرّبي على الإلقاء –آنذاك- سوى قصيدة "المومس العمياء" لما تحمله من صعود درامي، وكلمات "أصيلة" بإمكانها مساعدتي على نُطق الأحرف بشكلها الصحيح والرصين، وكنت حينها اقرأ القصيدة وألهج كلماتها من دون فهم شيء، فراح المدرّب يشرح لي ما تحمله من دراما، ولم يبالغ وقتها حين أخبرني بأن هذه القصيدة لا تقلّ أهميّة عن أي نص لشكسبير لما فيها من "هياج" درامي، وجمل فخمة: عمياء كالخفاش في وضح النهار، هي المدينة، والليل زاد لها عماها.  لم أستطع حفظ قصائد السياب، رغم موسيقاها العاليّة، لكني أخذت التقرّب منه أكثر، ذاك الفتى ...

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NEWTON 2014 Year in Review

Once again this year, as the editors of the New Texts Out Now (NEWTON) Page, we have been honored to have the opportunity to feature an astonishing range of books, articles, special issues of journals, and films for Jadaliyya readers in 2014. With authors generously agreeing to discuss their new works, offer background information on their research, and allow us to post excerpts from their books and articles, we have been able to offer first looks at some of the most important new work in the field, ...

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وما الداعي لمعارضة "قانون القوميّة"؟

إسرائيل أكثر عنصريةً من مجموع قوانينها، ومما تنصّ عليه هذه القوانين وأنظمة تطبيقها وممارستها. بل إن صيغ القوانين القائمة فيها تخفيف شكلي للجوهر وتبرير للسياسات المنبثقة عنه، فالقوانين فيها تجميل منمّق بمفردات ليبرالية للجوهر. وقانون القومية يكشف الجوهر بشكل جليّ. إن الحجّة المركزية التي أنطلق منها في ادعائي المذكور، هي أن القوانين كلّها، كما الدولة الرسمية، تتعامل مع أنها في حلِّ من سبق قيامها والإعلان الرسمي عنها ووثيقة استقلالها، وهي وثيقة إعلان المستعمر الصهيوني عن إنجاز مشروعه، ولا توجد وثيقة مرجعية ...

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Arabian Peninsula Media Roundup (December 30)

[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 Saudi and UAE oil ministers defend Opec response to falling prices The Saudi and Emirati ministers of oil assert that their ...

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Gezi’deki demokrasiyi laiklige baglamak solu bitirir

Berkeley Üniversitesi Sosyoloji Bölümü Öğretim Üyesi Doç. Cihan Tuğal, söyleşimizin ilk bölümünde, AKP’nin yaşamı daha da dayanılmaz kılacak hamleler yapmayı sürdüreceğini ifade etmişti. Buna karşılık eğitimden sağlığa, çalışma yaşamından çevreye AKP politikaları, giderek daha fazla insanı sokağa/direnişe sevk ediyor. Ama Türkiye’de ve dünyanın pek çok ülkesinde hayatı dayanılmaz kılan otoriter/faşist iktidarlara karşı süren itirazlar, halk hareketleri sonuç alıcı olamıyor. Sonuç almak nasıl mümkün ...

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مذكرة الى الهيئة الليبية الوطنية التأسيسية لصياغة الدستور عن المساواة في حقوق المواطنة للمرأة الليبية في الدستور

[صدر المذكرة التالية من قبل مجموعة من المواطنين الليبيين المعنيين لالهيئة الليبية الوطنية التأسيسية لصياغة الدستور في 20 آب 2014 فيما يتعلق بحق المرأة الليبية على نقل الجنسية لأبنائها.]  14 أغسطس 2014 إلى: الهيئة الليبية الوطنية التأسيسية لصياغة الدستور الموضوع: المساواة في حقوق المواطنة للمرأة الليبية في الدستور السادة أعضاء الهيئة بعد التحية نود تهنئتكم على انتخابكم للهيئة التأسيسية لصياغة مشروع الدستور في ليبيا وإلى الأمل والثقة التي ألهمت العديد من الموطنين في ليبيا إلى غاية ...

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Mona Marzouk’s ‘Trayvon’ Takes Inspiration from Egyptian Courtrooms

“Trayvon”, a solo show by Alexandrian artist Mona Marzouk, takes its name from the much publicized Trayvon Martin case. But the inspiration for the new painting series was Egyptian courtrooms, the roles they have played over the past four years in supposedly “upholding” justice and their representation in local media. Marzouk was interested in exploring courtrooms as a “psychological space, as a space of argumentation, and as a problematic” and embarked on extensive research in the history of courtrooms ...

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O.I.L. Media Roundup (28 December)

 [This is a roundup of news articles and other materials circulating on Occupation, Intervention and Law and reflects a wide variety of opinions. It does not reflect the views of the O.I.L. Page Editors or of Jadaliyya. You may send your own recommendations for inclusion in each biweekly roundup to OIL@jadaliyya.com by Monday night of every other week.] Palestine/Israel Why I Want Obama to Veto Abbas' UN Resolution on Palestine, Ali Abunimah Abunimah, writing for his blog on Electronic ...

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هَلْوَسَة

في الوقتِ الذي كانت تسيلُ فيهِ دماءُ الكتابةِ إليكِ على أوراقي .. تكوّنتْ من الريحِ شجرة، قطفتُ صوركِ منها ثماراً... ثم جلستُ في الظلّ كمن ينذر نفسه للعاصفة... بكل ما أُوتي من عاطفة... فانهمرتِ على قلبي بغزارة أمطارٍ جاءت بعد صلاة استسقاء... ما من صوفيٍّ في الأرض تخلّفَ عنها... وتشكّلَ من قناديل السماء طيفكِ في الفضاء،  فتسلّقتُ على ظهور أحلامي لأصفع الوهم بكفّ قبلة الحقيقة! وفي خِضمِّ كلّ ذلك... نَبَتِّ زهرةً في أَقبيةِ ذاكرتي السحيقة... وأنا مُحاطٌ بكِ في اللامكان , خرج ...

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Badr Shakir Al-Sayyab: The Balcony of the Nobleman's Daughter

I remember the village winter, where drops of light came sprinkling Through the gaps in the clouds, like melodies Sliding between the strings of an instrument set atremble by the darkness It had sung before--in the morning...why am I being so calculating?...as a child I would simply smile At my nights and days, their exultant boughs thickly laden with houri eye flowers. And we--as our booming grandfather laughed or sang in the shade of the reed pavilion And his tenants waited for “Your bounteous ...

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Badr Shakir al-Sayyab: Crutch in Hell

[This poem is purported to the be the last Sayyab composed during his life. We each translated it independently. Here, we present the two results, side by side. Between them and beyond them somewhere lies the beauty of the original.] 1. A Crutch in Hell I continue to circle Round the millstone of my pain A blindfolded bull, like a stone, how foolish to think it would rise up! While the people march onward to the mountain summits I cannot march—Woe unto me!—on my feet. And my bed is my prison, my ...

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مومس السياب وأيامي العمياء

هو الشعور ذاته ينتابني عندما أكون أمام طلب أو رغبة في الكتابة عن أسماء خلدت نفسها بنفسها بأعمالها، وهذا ما حدث مع بدر شاكر السياب أيضاً وأنا أحاول جاهدة أن أكتب شهادتي عنه. بعدما كتب الكثيرون وكُتب الكثير عنه ما الذي سأكتبه لم يُكتب وما الذي سأضيفهُ! ورغم ذلك أجد أن ذاكرتي تلحّ علي لأبدأ في نقطة بدأ منها معظم جيلي. لقد فتح جيلي عينيه على قصائد السياب في كتب المناهج المدرسية وكانت أول أبجدياتنا بعد الشعر الجاهلي وعصور ما بعد الإسلام ليكونَ  اسمه إلى جانب أسماء من جيلهِ وعصره. كانت لأنشودة المطر ...

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السيّاب...نهارٌ لا يرحل

عرفتُ السيّاب أول مرة في مطلع تسعينات القرن الماضي؛ أي بعد نحو ثلاثين عاماً على رحيله، من خلال قصيدته "رحل النهار"، فمن حسن حظي أنها كانت مدرجةً ضمن منهاج اللغة العربية للصفوف الثانوية كنموذج لحركة الشعر الحرّ، وذلك بعد أن تفرّد نزار قباني بالحظوة الواحدية شعرياً آنذاك خارج أسوار المدرسة وتقاليد المجتمع والعائلة المحافظين، وظلت قصائده العمودية هي الأكثر تداولاً كالمنشورات السرية بين أبناء جيلي ممن يسبّحون باسمه وبشعره في سنّ المراهقة. بدت "رحل النهار" أشبه ببيضة الدّيك، فقد حفظتُها ...

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