Mandy Turner and Omar Shweiki, editors, Decolonizing Palestinian Political Economy: De-Development and Beyond. London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2014.
Anyone who visited Ramallah in 2013 would have heard a lot of talk about seatbelts. Everyone there—everyone—was talking about them, and how consistent and prevalent they had ... Read More »
Open Bethlehem. Directed by Leila Sansour. Palestine, 2014
Towards the end of her new documentary Open Bethlehem (Palestine, 2014), filmmaker Leila Sansour discusses her aim to make Palestine “more important and palatable” to the White House and to US citizens. She stands outside the gated capitol of the United ... Read More »
Siamak Vossoughi, Better Than War. Athens and London: University of Georgia Press, 2015.
[Winner of the Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction]
What is it like to grow up in a country that routinely threatens to wage war on the place you are from? What happens to your sense of your self in the world? The Iranian ... Read More »
[The following is the second installment in "The Moroccan Non-Exception" Jadaliyya roundtable. Read the introduction here.]
A wave of contentious reactions have dominated the Moroccan media landscape following the release of Nabil Ayouch's new film Much Loved, a fictional story about three Moroccan ... Read More »
The Invisible Landscape and Concrete Futures: A Solo Exhibition of Hazem Harb, Salsali Private Museum, Dubai. 3 March—1 September 2015
Contemporary colonialism—exemplified by Israel’s occupation of Palestine—asserts its hegemony through the manipulation of two key sites: historical narratives and physical ... Read More »
Grégoire Chamayou, A Theory of the Drone, translated by Janet Lloyd. New York: The New Press, 2015.
Since the turn of this century, armed drones (that is, unmanned aerial vehicles, or UAVs) have become a weapon of choice for the United States. Drone strikes started during the Bush administration with the “war on ... Read More »
Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States. Boston: Beacon Press, 2014.
The Acoma poet Simon Ortiz writes in From Sand Creek that “the future will not be mad with loss and waste though the memory will.” People will not forget their past, but that should not stand in the way of change. ... Read More »
Kamel Daoud, The Meursault Investigation. Translated by John Cullen. New York: Other Press 2015.
Algerian journalist Kamel Daoud’s debut novel The Meursault Investigation, recently translated into English, retells the story of Albert Camus’s The Stranger from the point of view of Harun, the brother of the unnamed ... Read More »
In their forthcoming paper, The Tyranny of Context: Israeli Targeting Practices in Legal Perspective, Michael Schmitt and John J. Merriam examine Israel’s targeting practices against the Gaza Strip and Lebanon. Their purpose is to scrutinize the context in which these attacks take place as well as the Israeli Army’s ... Read More »
Marlène Ghorayeb, Beyrouth sous mandat français, construction d’une ville moderne. Paris: Karthala, 2014.
This is a wonderful addition to our knowledge of Beirut’s early days of modern planning, during the transition from Late Ottoman to French Mandate, and later. In the lineage of Jens Hanssen’s Fin de Siècle ... Read More »
Zones of Contention: After The Green Line. 8 February – 3 May 2015. The Bob & Lissa Shelley McDowell Gallery, Weatherspoon Art Museum, University of North Carolina at Greensboro.
In March 2015, I delivered an invited “Point of View Talk” at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro’s Weatherspoon Art Museum ... Read More »
Recension: Olfa Lamloun et Mohamed Ali Ben Zina (dir.), Les jeunes de Douar Hicher et d’Ettadhamen. Une enquête sociologique (Tunis: Arabesques, International Alert, 2015)
Depuis les « printemps arabes », les jeunes du Monde arabe attirent volontiers l’attention des chercheurs. Dans la littérature ... Read More »
Ronald Grigor Suny, “They Can Live in the Desert but Nowhere Else": A History of the Armenian Genocide. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2015.
In this centennial year since the Armenian Genocide, countless conferences, meetings, and commemorations are underway across the globe. While they have all been ... Read More »
Chiara Sebastiani, Una città, una rivoluzione. Tunisi e la riconquista dello spazio pubblico. Cosenza: Luigi Pellegrini Editore, 2014.
Collective, Au centre de Tunis: Géographies de l’espace public après une Révolution, available online here.
The question of public space has been among the most discussed ones ... Read More »
On 19 March 2015, twelve years will have passed since the invasion and occupation of Iraq. Today, the country is back in the headlines because of the brutality with which ISIS has been trying to destroy what is left of Iraq’s diverse cultural and human landscape. Since ISIS has moved into northern Iraq, they have ... Read More »
Yoann Morvan et Sinan Logie, Istanbul 2023, Paris: Editions B2, Coll. Territoires, 2014.
Les éditions B2 ont récemment enrichi leur collection Territoires par un « arpentage dans le temps et l’espace » d’Istanbul. Mais pas dans n’importe quel Istanbul. Istanbul 2023, c’est avant toute chose le choix de ... Read More »
In this interview, Alan Mikhail discusses his own work on the environmental history of the Ottoman Empire, the wider intervention of environmental history, and the challenge of interdisciplinarity. The interview was initially conducted in person at the 2013 Middle East Studies Association (MESA) conference and ... Read More »
American Sniper, directed by Clint Eastwood. USA, 2014.
There is a lull at the moment in the clamor around Clint Eastwood's controversial film American Sniper, as award season ends and the movie's powerful box office stamina pushes the DVD release into the summer. This moment perhaps offers an opportunity to consider ... Read More »
[This is the third 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; for Naomi Davidson’s response, “The Vagaries of Laïcité,” click here.]
In bringing the ... Read More »
[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,” ... Read More »
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 ... Read More »
[This is the first of three responses to Muriam Haleh Davis’ review essay of books by Joan W. Scott, Naomi Davidson, and Mayanthi Fernando. For Naomi Davidson's response, "The Vagaries of Laïcité," click here.]
I find Muriam Haleh Davis’ commentary on Charlie Hebdo and French secularism (by way of a review ... Read More »
Mayanthi L. Fernando, The Republic Unsettled: Muslim French and the Contradictions of Secularism. Durham: Duke University Press, 2014.
Naomi Davidson. Only Muslim: Embodying Islam in Twentieth-Century France. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2012.
Joan Wallach Scott. The Politics of the Veil. Princeton: Princeton ... Read More »
Philippe Cadène and Brigitte Dumortier, Atlas of the Gulf States. Leiden: Brill, 2013.
Mapping as a French Academic Tradition and its Critics
It seems that English-speaking geographers and urbanists publish many fewer atlases, and draw fewer maps, than their French and—at least until recently—German counterparts. In ... Read More »
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 ... Read More »
Omar, directed by Hany Abu-Assad. Palestine, 2013.
Omar, the most recent film by Palestinian director Hany Abu-Assad (of Paradise Now fame), opens with a traversing of obstacles—a prefatory homage to the resilient Palestinian spirit. Exuding youthful vigor, the titular character scales the portion of the separation ... Read More »
On 6 June 2014, the Kuwait pavilion at La Biennale di Venezia’s 14th International Architecture Exhibition opened with a restaging of an event that took place three decades earlier: the ceremonial opening of the Kuwait National Museum. Under the heading “Acquiring Modernity” (responding to the overall ... Read More »
I Left My Shoes in Istanbul, directed by Nigol Bezjian. Lebanon/Turkey, 2013.
Nigol Bezjian’s I Left My Shoes in Istanbul begins with its protagonist protesting that he has no desire to go on the journey that lies at the heart of the film. It ends with the haunting voice of a singer, begging the listener, “Do not ... Read More »
Ahmet Hamdi Tanpınar, The Time Regulation Institute, translated by Maureen Freely and Alexander Dawe, introduction by Pankaj Mishra. New York: Penguin, 2014.
The verbal text is jealous of its linguistic signature but impatient of national identity. Translation flourishes by virtue of that paradox. ... Read More »
House of Strength
Performance by Nooshin Rostami
Choreography by Merisha Mesihovic
Industry City Open Studios, Brooklyn
26 April 2014
[House of Strength is a performance by the Iranian Brooklyn-based artist Nooshin Rostami inspired by the traditional Persian gymnasiums called ... Read More »