ajnabieh: The open doors of a subway/metro car, with a sign above them, reading "lilsayyidat faqat" [Ladies Only] (sayyidat faqat)
Thank Christ someone else made a SharkNATO joke.

Given that I'm a social scientist who is now spending a reasonable amount of time pretending to be a media studies type, I should probably read this new book of analyses of single episodes of TV the way that undergrads in media studies programs are asked to do it.

I am so glad Cairo Gossip getting purchased by a larger Cairo media company didn't make it suck. Here's some snark about Haifa Wehbe that also has some vague political connotations I don't feel like unpacking.

The Egyptian government is seriously considering blocking Whatsapp and Viber? Prepare for another revolution, yanni.

I feel like someone asked me for recommendations for speculative fiction written by Middle Eastern writers. I don't know of a lot of it, but this looks good. (Also: if you don't know Saladin Ahmed's work, you should.)

There is apparently a news story going around about Tunisian women going to Syria to perform sexual services for the jihadist forces fighting there??? MuslimahMediaWatch takes it down, without dismissing the possibility that something's actually happening which is being twisted.

I haven't read the whole of this new report on Muslim-American youth media engagement, but the précis clicks well with my own observations and research. God, I gotta get my book out…
ajnabieh: The text "My Marxist feminist dialective brings all the boys to the yard."   (Default)
Quick hits from my reading list:

Egypt, the IMF, and Europe. A policy paper by Farah Halime, whose blog is a great resource on Middle Eastern economics for folks (like me) who want to incorporate thinking on economic issues into our work without being, ourselves, experts in economics. (I am still confused how I fell into doing political economy work at this particular moment in time.) The ongoing disaster that is Egypt's economy, and how it relates to the world economic system, isn't nearing a resolution, but this paper neatly lays out what's going on in Egyptian politics and economics that's making negotiating with the IMF so difficult, and what the policy problems with loans are going to be. (It's not anti-loan or anti-IMF, but it does acknowledge the multiple issues with loans and their consequences--more reformist than radical.)

The Anatomy of Protest in Egypt and Tunisia. The Arab Barometer project is the best collection of cross-national quantitative data on public opinion in the Arab world; as a qualitative researcher, I'm always glad when someone else has collected high-quality quant data that I can use in a glancing manner when I need some of it, so I don't have to. Here, three of the researchers associated with the project lay out some conclusions about protesters in Egypt and Tunisia during the revolutions. The centrality of economic and anti-corruption concerns for protesters stands out, as does the relative lack of interest in Islamist transformation, and the lower interest in civil and political rights.

Engaging the Haitian Diaspora. The Caribbean countries are some of the most important and most-studied cases of diaspora political involvement, and the details of the Haitian diaspora's demographics recounted in this article are fascinating, and demonstrate why diaspora political and economic engagement is so important in this case. I'm also glad to see more stuff not about the Middle East coming from the Cairo Review, which is a brilliant new(-ish) journal from AUC.

What is Tuz? Storytelling from the Queer Arab Diaspora. I haven't listened to this yet--in fact, I rarely listen to podcasts and radio shows, because I am weird and prefer to assimilate new information by reading, rather than listening--but it seems really awesome. And makes me miss NYC.

Explanation is Not the Point: Domestic Work, Islamic Dawa and Becoming Muslim in Kuwait (PDF) This brilliant article by Attiya Ahmad on migrant domestic workers' conversions to Islam in Kuwait is fascinating as a piece of ethnography, and insightful as an exploration of what 'conversion' means in different cultural contexts. I'm particularly interested in it because I'm returning to an old project on the construction of an idea of preference for Muslim domestic workers in Gulf countries, and this comments interestingly on the subject in one of the footnotes. (Also, because of my obsession with everything related to Kuwait ever. KUWAIT.)
ajnabieh: The text "My Marxist feminist dialective brings all the boys to the yard."   (marxist feminist)
So you may possibly have heard there is a revolution going on in Egypt?

Yeah, this has not made writing my literature review section of my dissertation any easier. Sometimes, the world is just more interesting that my work.

I spent all of yesterday going through my open tabs that I had saved "to blog about." I closed a lot of them because they're out of date. That still left me with the following ten links...and then I don't post this, and my to-link pile grows...I'm just going to throw this up here and see what happens.

Gender Stuff. )

Art, Visuals, and Politics )

And ordinary political stuff about Egypt. )

And I'm putting this above the cut, because I think (?) I have readers involved in fakenews fandom: Does anybody know where I can get screencaps of Christiane Aman-purr from last night's Colbert? Because I need that icon like yesterday. (For those who don't watch it: he had a cat try to predict the outcome of the Egyptian revolution, a la that octupus that predicted the World Cup. It went like you would think asking a cat to do something on national TV went.)
ajnabieh: The text "My Marxist feminist dialective brings all the boys to the yard."   (marxist feminist)
So, the government of Tunisia collapsed today. As of right now, the former president, Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali, is in an airplane en route to Malta Paris (I'm glad I checked before I hit post), and the Prime Minister, Mohamed Ghannouchi, is assuming the presidency. Riots and demonstrations are ongoing, and it's not precisely clear whether Ben Ali's departure will be enough to calm the situation sufficiently. In any case, it's an exciting, scary, and fascinating moment for Arab politics. I collected some interesting links, ranging from good news sources to excellent editorials to a nod to Arabic linguistics, because I'm like that. Let me know if you see anything else good in your internetting today!

Sources To Follow About What's Up

Live: Tunisia Turmoil (BBC)

This is what I'm following for the play-by-play of what's going on. It's an auto-updating page, so I'm keeping it open and flipping back and forth as I get things done on the computer. There's something very powerful about watching a regime fall in real time. I may, possibly, have gotten something in my eye.

Spotlight on Tunisia (Al Jazeera English)

Al Jazeera's coverage is pretty in-depth; they also have cool things like an interactive map of protests over time.

Mr. Oui Oui Takes Charge (Blake Hounshell @ The Middle East Channel)

A basic update on the situation as of right now--with some details on Ghannouchi.

Global Voices - Tunisia page

Global Voices is a blog aggregator/translation project, that pulls blog posts from countries all over the world, translates them into other languages, and groups them together by theme. This will get you all of the Tunisia posts currently on the site, most of which are about the ongoing unrest. If you don't speak Arabic but want to know what's being said, this is a good source for that.

Good Editorials/Essays

Where are the democracy promoters on Tunisia? (Marc Lynch @ Foreign Policy)

Lynch has been on fire with the Tunisia posts this week. I picked this one because it points out a major problem in American foreign policy: that it's remarkably inconsistent, paying more attention to "famous cases" than to others that are structurally identical, but lack the name recognition.

The Limits of Silencing Tunisia (Bassam Bounenni @ the Middle East Channel)

Addresses the freedoms of speech and press issues with the Ben Ali regime, by a Tunisian journalist.

Activist Crackdown: Tunisia vs. Iran (Jillian C. York @ Al Jazeera English)

So, why did a "twitter revolution" in Iran end up the biggest piece of political news for a month, but the same actions in Tunisia get little to no coverage? Inquiring minds want to know.

Reporting With Background Info

Behind Tunisia Unrest, Rage Over Wealth of Ruling Family (New York Times)
An article on the rioting at Hammamet, a beach resort town; gives some insight into the class dynamics of the conflict.

Rumbles on the Arab Street (Middle East Channel)

Cool slideshow of images from the protests, with commentary.

Unrest in Tunisia, Fuel by Facebook (NY Times Video)

A quick video report; no transcript available that I saw. At 1:30, there are a group of students going in a circle around a bunch arranged in a pattern. The ones in the center are spelling out حرية, hurriyeh, freedom.

And For Awesomeness's Sake

Ben Ali speaks in Tunisian "for the first time" (Language Log)

Addressing the linguistic issues at play in Ben Ali's most recent speeches. Arabic diglossia is one of my favorite things about it, but also one of the biggest pains for a non-native speaker learning the language; all my education has been in fusha, which means I'm highly unequipped to handle most daily exchanges.


ajnabieh: The text "My Marxist feminist dialective brings all the boys to the yard."   (Default)
Ajnabieh - The Foreigner

March 2016

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