Friday, December 14, 2012

Beyond the Bombs: New Web Site with Fresh Perspective on Middle East and North Africa

Beyond the Bombs is a new, innovative, and much needed web site that gives the Middle East and North Africa a human face and paints a refreshing picture of the region--colored by its people, cultures, religions, languages, politics, and economics.

The site has been created by Stanford graduate Ashley Lohmann who is a Los Angeles-based freelance journalist and an Associate Editor (Middle East) at Fair Observer (see more here).

Check out the site at:

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Islamic Codicology Course at Stanford, August 26-30, 2013

Please find below the announcement from the Stanford University Libraries and the Islamic Manuscript Association (TIMA) about the upcoming Islamic Codicology Course at Stanford.
For further inquiries, please contact John Eilts directly at

The Islamic Manuscript Association (TIMA) and Stanford University Libraries have announced a full week Islamic codicology course to be held at Stanford next August. This will be the first time the course has been offered in North America. I have attached the first announcement. The costs are set at 550 pounds for the full 5 day course for non-TIMA members and 500 pounds for TIMA members (membership costs 30 pounds per year). There is an option for attending the four day lecture series only and pricing has yet to be set. The fifth day is a hands on class. Space is limited and is guranteed on a first come basis. For further information please contact Please feel free to send this to Stanford faculty and graduate students who might be interested. CONTACT INFO: John A. Eilts Curator, Islamic& Middle Eastern Collection Stanford University Libraries 251 Green Library Stanford, CA 94305-6004 USA Email: Tel: +1.650,736.1815

Jameel Prize Exhibition at Stanford: Art Inspired by Islamic Tradition (Dec 12-March 10, 2013)

First U.S. Viewing of International Exhibition
The Jameel Prize: Art Inspired by Islamic Tradition
December 12, 2012–March 10, 2013
Stanford University

Soody Sharifi, Fashion Week, 2010. Courtesy of the LTMH Gallery, New York

Stanford, Calif. — On view for the first time in the United States, “The Jameel Prize: Art Inspired by Islamic Tradition” opens December 12 at Stanford University’s Cantor Arts Center. This special exhibition presents the work of 10 artists selected as finalists for the prestigious Jameel Prize, an international award bestowed by the Victoria and Albert Museum in London and sponsored by Abdul Latif Jameel Community Initiatives. 

The Jameel Prize, awarded for contemporary art and design inspired by Islamic tradition, encourages the exploration of long-established practices of Islamic art, craft and design within a contemporary framework. The resulting exhibition demonstrates that artists can and do use these traditions in ways that are vividly relevant to the contemporary world. The prize also fosters a wider debate about Islamic culture and its role today.

The Jameel Prize is truly international. Awarded every two years, it is open to all entrants and not restricted to Muslims or those from the Islamic world. Entry for the Jameel Prize is by nomination. For the 2011 Jameel Prize, the names of almost 200 artists and designers were put forward from countries as diverse as the United States, Spain, Nigeria, Egypt and Pakistan. From this list, 10 finalists were selected, with one chosen as a winner for a prize of 25,000 British pounds, or approximately 35,800 U.S. dollars.

This exhibition presents art by all 10 finalists, more than 20 works that draw on the artists’ and designers’ own local and regional traditions, celebrating particular materials and iconography with strong references to traditional Islamic art. The artworks on view range from felt costumes to sculptural installations made from handmade terracotta bricks, from mirror mosaic to digital collages inspired by classical Persian miniature paintings. In many of the pieces, there is an underlying reference to the artists’ own “hybrid” cultural identity, in addition to the contrast between old and new, minimalism and ornament, home and exile.

The finalists are culturally diverse, representing many countries. The youngest artist, Noor Ali Chagani, was born in Pakistan, and he lives in Lahore. Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian, who has works in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, was born in Iran but spent many years in the United States; she currently lives in Tehran. Bita Ghezelayagh, born in Italy, now lives in London and Tehran. Babak Golkar, born in the United States, now lives in Canada. Hayv Kahraman, born in Iraq, now lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. Rachid Koraïchi, born in Algeria, now lives in Tunisia and France. Hazem EI Mestikawy, born in Egypt, lives in Egypt and Austria. Hadieh Shafie, born in Iran, lives in the United States. Soody Sharifi, born in Iran, lives in the United States. (See artists’ bios below.)

Rachid Koraïchi won the Jameel Prize 2011 for his series of embroidered cloth banners entitled “Les Maitres invisibles” (“The Invisible Masters”), made in 2008. Koraïchi uses Arabic calligraphy and symbols and ciphers from a range of other languages and cultures to explore the lives and legacies of the 14 great mystics of Islam. These “masters” include great Muslim thinkers and poets such as Rumi and EI Arabi, whose teachings have spread even to the West.

The exhibition continues to March 10, on view in three spaces at the Cantor Arts Center. Koraïchi’s banners hang prominently from the Geballe Family Balcony, over the Cantor’s main lobby. The other works are presented upstairs in the Ruth Levison Halperin Gallery and the Lynn Krywick Gibbons Gallery.

The exhibition is organized by the Victoria and Albert Museum London (V&A) in partnership with the Abdul Latif Jameel Community Initiatives. We also gratefully acknowledge the support of Cantor Arts Center Members and the Sohaib and Sara Abbasi Program in Islamic Studies at Stanford University, which has made possible the exhibition’s presentation at Stanford.

Related events include a Spotlight Talk by a graduate student on Friday, January 11 at 2 pm and a Artist's Talk by Rachid Koraïchi on Thursday, January 24 at 5:30 pm. On Thursday, February 7, beginning at 5:30 pm, a panel of experts will engage in scholarly debate about contemporary Islamic art. “Axis of Light,” a 60-minute documentary film about eight artists from the Middle East, including Rachid Koraïchi, will be shown; event details to be announced. The programs are open to the public with free admission.

The Cantor Arts Center is open Wednesday–Sunday, 11 am–5 pm, Thursday until 8 pm. Admission is free. The Center is located on the Stanford campus, off Palm Drive at Museum Way. Parking is free after 4 pm. weekdays and all day on weekends. Information: 650-723-4177,

For more info see
Also see

Rachid Koraichi, The Invisible Masters, 2008. Courtesy of October Gallery. Photo by Jonathan Greet

Monday, December 10, 2012

Arabology Season Finale Podcast Counts Down Top 20 'Alternative' Arabic Musical Artists of 2012

The 3rd Season Finale of 'Arabology'--hosted by Dr. Ramzi Salti, Lecturer at Stanford University, counts down the Top 20 'Alternative' Arabic Artists of 2012 including Mashrou' Leila, Rim Banna, Omeima El Khalil, Zeid Hamdan, Tania Saleh, Mike Massy, Natacha Atlas, Hana Malhas, Jadal, Yasmine Hamdan, Tania Kassis, Jowan Safadi, more. This episode is hosted by DJ Ramzi and guest host Mohammed El Jurf (pic below).

PLAYLIST (Artist/ Track/ Album/Label)
20. Safadi, Jowan/ A3ish Hayati (Live My Life) & Kul El Banat (All the Girls)/ Namroud/ Eka3
19. Massy, Mike/ Ya Zaman/ Ya Zaman/ Falak Productions
18. Jadal/ Bye Bye Azizi/ Single/ Forward Music
17. Natacha Atlas/ Taalet/ Paleo 2012/ Disques Office
16. Banna, Rim & Henrik Koitzsch/ Wait for Me (Intazirini)/ This Was Not My Story/ Un Mundo Mejor
15. Trio Joubran/ Nawwar/ Paleo 2012/ Disques Office
14. Maraka, Aziz/ Possessed/ Master Copy/ Cd Baby
13. Mathlouthi, Emel/ Ma Lkit (Remix)/ Kelmti Horra/ World Village
12. Kassis, Tania/ Chou Ma Sar (Remix Mhanna & Cupélian)/ Oriental Colors/ Magnum Recs Intl
11. Saleh, Tania/ Hsebak/ Radio Beirut/ Galileo Music Communication Gmbh / Ioda
10. Hamdan, Zeid/ La Repetition/ Beirut Hotel (Soundtrack)/ Lfp Les Films Pelléas
9. Ayoub, Elizabeth/ Habibi/ Oceanos Y Lunas/ Four Quarters Entertainment
8. Hamdan, Yasmine/ Beirut/ Yasmine Hamdan/ Kwaidan Records
7. Offendum, Omar/ The Arab Speaks Of Rivers/ Syrianamericana/ Cosher Ink, Llc
6. Dam/ Mali Huriye (I Don't Have Freedom)/ Ihda'/ Redcircle Music
5. Aburedwan, Ramzi/ Tahrir (Liberation)/ Reflections Of Palestine/ Riverboat Records
4. Maryam/ Watan El Akk/ Mosh Baghani/ Cd Baby
3. Malhas, Hana (ft Yazan Al Rousan)/ Trooh/ Shapeshift/ Hana Malhas
2. Mashrou' Leila/ Fasateen/ Mashrou' Leila/ B-Root Productions
1. El Khalil, Omeima/ Ouhibbouka Akthar/ Ya/ Forward Music

Monday, December 3, 2012

Online Magazine 'Jadaliyya' Flourishing in Its Second Year

Jadaliyya is an independent ezine produced by the Arab Studies Institute (, a network of writers associated with the Arab Studies Journal (

Jadaliyya provides a unique source of insight and critical analysis that combines scholarship, advocacy, and local knowledge with an eye on audiences in the United States, the Arab world, and beyond. The site currently publishes posts both in Arabic and in English.

Jadaliyya operations are mostly volunteer-run and self-produced by the editorial team and a steadily expanding pool of contributors, researchers, and guests. The Co-Editors are writers, scholars, and advocates with a primary interest in the Middle East.

One motivation behind this effort is the need to discuss the “Arab World” or the “Middle East” as a place and space that is inhabited by communities, and not solely as an object of foreign policy or “social-scientific” inquiry. Hence, there is an emphasis on attracting writers from the region itself.

If you are interested in contributing to Jadaliyya, send them your post, with your bio and a release form to [click "Submissions" on the main page for more information]

For more info see or Facebook Page at

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Meet Soprano Mariam Tamari

Born to a Palestinian artist father and a Japanese schoolteacher mother, opera singer Mariam Tamari grew up in Tokyo, Japan.

A graduate of Bryn Mawr College, Tamari majored in music and philosophy. She made her lead opera debut in as Adina in L’Eliser d’ Amore at the Nissay Theater in Tokyo. Tamari has also performed as Kate in Madame Butterfly, Jeanne, in Jeanne d’ Arc au Bucher, Ivy Smith in On the Town, and as Maria in West Side Story. She currently performs as a soloist and recitalist in Japan, the U.S., Europe, and the Middle East.

Respected around the world, she has performed for the Emperor and Empress of Japan and the King and Queen of Jordan. She has been described as having "special flair for French melodies" and hailed for her "lucid musicality" and "virtuosity."

Here is a video clip of Mariam Tamari performing in Ramallah in December of 2010:

Here is a video clip of Mariam Tamari, Gen Tomuro --Puccini, "Tu che di gel sei cinta" Turandot

For more info, see Mariam Tamari's blog at

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Musician/Singer Jowan Safadi Detained by Jordanian Police

Jowan Safadi

Jowan Safadi, whose new album Namroud has been hailed as both controversial and creative, was detained yesterday at the Police department of "Abdali" in Amman. He is accused of "insulting religion" during his concert last Wednesday in Amman. Jowan was set to present his Accoustic Show Live @ The Rainbow, Amman (Jordan) on Saturday Dec 1, 2012 at 8pm (see poster below then read on).

According the Eka3 Facebook Page, Jowan Safadi was imprisoned in the "Jowayda" in Jordan.  Several msuicians have rushed to Jowan Safadi's arrest including Tunisian singer Emel Mathlouthi and Palestinian singer Rim Banna (see screen captures below and keep reading on).  (update on Dec 4: He was released the next day).

Jowan Safadi is originally from Nazareth but now lives in Haifa and produces alternative/experimental Arabic music with various influences. For 8 years, he was part of the band “Lenses” as a singer, songwriter and guitarist. 'Lenses' was an alternative hafla-rock band that split up in late 2007 after having recorded and released three studio albums.

Jowan Safadi in an experimental singer whose songs, in Arabic, have broached issues ranging from political corruption to hypocricy in religion. You can listen to some of his songs on Reverbnation at this link or check out his Facebook page at this link.

Jowan Safadi has many video clips featured on his YouTube Channel at
Here are some video clips by Jowan Safadi that are considered 'controversial':

This video clip is titled يا حرام الكفار and talks about atheists/non-believers:

The clip below is titled جوان صفدي - موال المايكروتشيب Jowan Safadi - The Microchip Song.  The clip is available at this link and has English subtitles:

Here is a video clip of Jowan Safadi in concert with Hala Amdan:

Here is a video clip of Jowan Safadi in concert with Haya Za3atra:

Here is Jowan Safadi's new album Namroud followed by samples from the CD:

For more on Jowan Safadi:

*  Article in Arabic about Jowan Safadi's arrest:  See THIS LINK

*  Jowan Safadi's Facebook page:

*  Jowan Safadi on Reverbnation:

* Jowan Safadi's YouTube Channel:

* Facebook Page to Free Jowan Safadi:

Nov 29 Podcast of 'Arabology' Available

The 9th episode of the 3rd Season of Arabology (aired Nov 29) was hosted by DJ Ramzi who played a variety of Arabic songs (see playlist below) while commenting about them in English.

To Download: 

To Listen: 

Playlist for Arabology Thursday, 29 Nov 2012 3pm - 5pm DJ: Ramzi S.
Artist/ Track/ Album/ Label
1. Samsa/ Qalbi Ma Kayelli Khir/ Alem Jdid (New World)/ Skander Guetari
2. Maraka, Aziz/ Amman/ Master Copy/ Cd Baby
3. Aburedwan, Ramzi / Bahar (Sea)/ Reflections Of Palestine/ Riverboat Records
4. Laroussi, Djamel/ Kifach Hilti/ Arabic Beat/ Putumayo World Music
5. Ajram, Nancy/ Ady El Beida/ Super Nancy/ Emi
6. Mashrou Leila/ Wajih (Themightyrouge Remix)/ unreleased/ Mashrou Leila
7. Wael Kfoury/ Ma'oole Tishti Fee Abb/ Dj Nader - Hizzy Hips In The Mix/ Level Up
8. El Hamdaoui, Jalal/ Sidi H'bibi/ Arabic Beat/ Putumayo World Music
9. Faudel/ Bambino/ Bled Memory/ Mercury (France)
10. Abu Ghazaleh, Tamer/ 7ob/ Mir'ah/ Eka3
11. Maryam/ Watan El Akk/ Mosh Baghani/ Cd Baby
12. Watcha Clan/ Osfour/ Arabic Beat/ Putumayo World Music
13. Hamdan, Yasmine/ La Mouch/ Yasmine Hamdan/ Kwaidan Records
14. Soultan, Ahmed/ Itim/ Arabic Beat/ Putumayo World Music
15. Massy, Mike/ Jazr W Mad/ Ya Zaman/ Falak Productions
16. Hakiim/ Albi Ya Ho/ Dj Nader/ Level Up Records & Tapes
17. Nourhan/ Habibi Ya Ain/ Dj Nader - Hizzy Hips In The Mix/ Level Up
18. Hallani, Assi/ Bel 3arabi/ Bel 3arabi/ Roatana
19. Fadel Shaker Ya Ghayeb/ Dj Nader - Hizzy Hips In The Mix/ Level Up
20. Samsa/ Alem Jdid (New World) / Alem Jdid (New World)/ Skander Guetari
21. Aburedwan, Ramzi/ Rahil (Exile)/ Reflections Of Palestine/ Riverboat Records

Thursday, November 29, 2012

My CD Review: Tamer Abu Ghazaleh - Mir'ah

Tamer Abu Ghazaleh Mir’ah 

--All Tracks are FCC CLEAN—

A uniquely creative performer and promoter of a wide range of music, Tamer Abu Ghazaleh is a leading figure in modern Arabic culture. This singer, multi-instrumentalist, composer and producer has over the past few years released a debut album and founded eka3 (2007), a regional platform dedicated to promoting, producing, distributing, and touring independent Arabic music. This is his debut album titled Mir'ah (Mirror) and the lyrics are either in classical Arabic or in the Levantine colloquial dialect.

**1. 7ob [Love] is a piece with classical Arabic lyrics with guitar sound only

2. . Takhabot [Internal Struggle]. Oud and guitar with piano. Jordanian dialect.

3. Al Shibak [The Net] This track sounds like an experimental impromptu track with guitar and oud. Repetitive, haunting lyrics, featuring multi layered vocals by the same singer.

4. Mir’ah [Mirror] Title track is bizarre sounding, deliberately annoying instruments and vocals all over the place. Classical Arabic poetry set to music..

5. Dawameh [Whirlwind] Long musical Oud intro; Jordanian dialect.

**6. 7awel Ya Ghanam [Melody Maker] Multiple Oud sounds, some bouzouki, instrumental track (no vocals)

7. Sokoot [Silence] This track has the most instrument variety, many bizarre sounding noises and long lamenting vocals in Levantine Arabic.

**My picks: 1, 6 Ramzi Salti

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Aswat at Yoshi's in Oakland, CA on Dec 2: Moroccan & Tunisian Music

Zawaya presents Aswat, the Bay Area's Premier Arab Music Ensemble, performing Moroccan Folk Music
and The Music of Al-Hadi Al-Juwaini, The Father of 20th Century Tunisian Music.

December 2, 2012

7:00 PM

Yoshi's Oakland
510 Embarcadero West
Jack London Square
Oakland, CA


510 Embarcadero West
Jack London Square


Mashrou' Leila Wows Montréal

On October 25th 2012, Charnobyl Voice hosted Mashrou' Leila's first show in North America.  Lebanese (alternative) music group Mashrou' Leila performed in Montreal, Canada to a sold out audience of fans who kept begging for more. The group also recorded their new album in Montreal--a soon-to-be-released follow up to their 2 previously released musical masterpieces.

Here is a video clip from the Montreal concerts:

Upon the group's return to Beirut, Lebanon, the band's lead vocalist, Hamed Sinno, performed with Piers Faccini on November 25, 2012 at Music Hall . Here is a teaser from that event:

For more on the band, see

Zainah Anwar "Advocating for Women's Rights in Islam" (This Wednesday at Stanford)

THIS Wednesday at Stanford at 6pm: CDDRL fellow Zainah Anwar "Advocating for Women's Rights in Islam"

Monday, November 26, 2012

DAM Releases New Video Clip about 'Honor Killings'

Although the Palestinian Hip Hop group DAM has been criticized for releasing this song and video clip during such tumultuous times in Gaza (see this link), this blogger thinks that the group's new release is still definitely worth a look.

The video clip was directed by Jackie Salloum (Slingshot Hip Hop) and broaches the issue of 'honor killings' and violence against women. It has been supported by UN Women (United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women). DAM is joined in this recording by well known singer Amal Murkus and the clip, available in HD, also includes optional English subtitles.

Here is the clip followed by an English translation plus the credits:

DAM featuring AMAL MURKUS - If I Could Go Back In Time لو أرجع

Arabic script:  If I Could Go Back In Time (Suhel Nafar)

‏Before she was murdered, she wasn't alive
‏We'll tell her story backwards from her murder to her birth
‏Her body rises from the grave to the ground
‏The bullet flies out of her forehead and swallowed into the gun
‏The sound of her echo screams, she screams back
‏Tears rise up from her cheeks to her eyes
‏Behind the clouds of smoke, faces of her family appear
‏Without shame, her brother puts the gun in his pocket
‏Her father throws down the shovel and wipes the sweat off his forehead
‏He shakes his head, satisfied from the size of the grave
‏They drag her back to the car, her legs kicking
‏Like a sand storm, she's erasing her own tracks
‏They throw her in the trunk, she doesn't know where she is
‏But she knows that three left the house and only two will return
‏They reach the house; throw her to the bed in violence
‏"So you want run away huh?" they wake her with violence

‏Amal Murkus (Chorus)
‏If I could go back in time
‏I would smile
‏Fall in love
‏If I could go back in time
‏I would draw

‏Mahmood Jrere:
‏She dreams before falling asleep
‏We'll tell her story backwards, maybe understand
‏The clock hands move right to left
‏She reconstructs her steps as if she were lost
‏She sleeps prepared, money for the taxi
‏Plane ticket and passport under her pillow
‏Answer: leave the clothes in the closet; she plans to wear a new life
‏Question: what if they ask what the suitcase is for?
‏She went to bed, leaves table
‏Eats well, she must act today
‏Her nose stops bleeding, that's what they see
‏But it's a fresh wound; before they will beat her she will beat them
‏Her mom says "your life is like heaven"
‏She's right, if you taste the forbidden you better know someone is watching
‏Two hours before dinner, the phone hangs up
‏Her mom is shocked "the flight is delayed"
‏Phone rings

‏ Amal Murkus (Chorus)

‏Tamer Nafar:
‏Before she answers, she isn't even asked
‏The story is like the logic in her life, all backwards
‏Her hands up in the sky, begging for help
‏Their hands up in the sky reciting the Fatiha (ceremony before marriage)
‏The calendar page moves one day back, the time is
‏Afternoon, the argument is over, her brother commands her
‏Blood flows from her lips to her nose
‏A sound of a fist, his hand jumps from her face
‏It's the first time in her life that she says "NO!"
‏Her mom announces happily "tomorrow you will marry your cousin"
‏If I look through the album of her life
‏I won't see a photo of her standing up for her rights
‏It's hard, the pages are stuck to my hand
‏Her past full of blood and tears
‏But we promise you, from her murder to her birth
‏Their expressions filled with anger as if someone announced a crime
‏"Congratulations, it's a girl"
‏The beginning.

Arabic script:  Freedom For My Sisters


Lyrics written by DAM
Music produced & arranged by NABIL NAFAR
Mastered by SAQIB

Produced by LAURA HAWA
Assistant Director ELI REZIK
Director of Photography ARI ISSLER
Composting and Visual Effects CONRAD OSTWALD
Costume Designer and Stylist NADA NAFAR


Production Manager JAMAL KHLAYLEH 

Makeup Artist VERED NIVO
Lighting Director ARI ISSLER

Steadicam Operator HAIM ASIAS



Production Assistant MANAR YACOUB

Best Boy Gaffer REA'OT GING

Best Boy Grip FADI MATAR
Visual Effects Supervisor HASHEM ODEH
Sound Playback JAMIL NAFAR



Chorus scene

Fateha Readers

Young girls

Special Thanks




Friday, November 23, 2012

Thanksgiving 'Arabology' Podcast (Nov 22) Co-Hosted by Eric and Ahmad ft Saleem

The Thanksgiving edition of Arabology (aired Nov 22) was co-hosted by DJ Ramzi, Eric and Ahmad and included beautiful Arabic songs about counting one's blessing and not forgetting others.

The show also featured two special songs for Fairuz's 77th birthday, two new songs by Mashrou' Leila, and a special interview with male belly dancer/screenwriter Saleem who wrote the controversial stage play 'Salam Shalom' (see pictures and complete playlist below)

(Left to right): Ahmad Q, Eric D, DJ ramzi

With Saleem

Playlist (Artist/Track/Album/Label)
1. Abu Ghazaleh, Tamer/ Khabar 3ajel (Urgent News) Single/ Eka3
2. Beirut Biloma/ Beirut ya Hayati C-Rouge Mix/ Single/ Reverbnation
3. Fairuz/ Nassam (Housed Up Remix)/ Dj Nader - Hizzy Hips In The Mix/ Level Up
4. Fairuz/ El Bint El Chalabiya/ Eh, Fi Amal/ Fbe
5. Thanksgiving Chat with Ahmad Qousi Part 1
6. Laroussi, Djamel/ Kifach Hilti/ Arabic Beat/ Putumayo World Music
7. Samsa/ Alem Jdid (New World)/ Alem Jdid/ Skander Guetari
8. El Harrachi, Dahmane/ Assanit Ouefhem/ Jiit Ma Habibi/ Jasmine
9. Thanksgiving Chat with Ahmad Qousi Part 2
10. Maraka, Aziz/ Amman/ Master Copy/ Cd Baby
11. Nasr, May/ Sajar El Bann (by Marcel Khalifeh)/ Reverbnation/ RAM May Nasr
12. Massy, Mike/ Tannoura Maxi/ Tannoura Maxi (Soundtrack)/ Massy
13. Kfoury, Wael/ Ya Dalli Ya Rouhi/ Ya Dalli Ya Rouhi/ Rotana
14. Malhas, Hana (ft Yazan El Rousan) / Trooh/ Shapeshift/ Hana Malhas
15. Thanksgiving Chat with Eric Dobson Part 1
16. Labidi, Mariem/ Ne me quitte pas (Arabic Version)/ Single/ Reverbnation
17. Mashrou' Leila/ Ne me quitte pas (Lebanese version)/ Single/ Disques Office
18. Mashrou' Leila/ Arous/ Single/ Mashrou' Leila
19. Thanksgiving Chat with Eric Dobson Part 2
20. Ajram, Nancy/ Ya Banat/ Super Nancy/ Emi
21. Interview with male belly dancer/ screenwriter "Saleem"
22. Fairuz/ Ana la habibi/ To Assy/ VDL

To Download:

To Listen Instantly:

Sunday, November 18, 2012

When I Saw You: A Film That Could Win the Next Foreign Language Oscar

Congratulations to the film  "When I Saw You" for winning Best Arab Film at the Abu Dhabi Film Festival last month and for being the Palestinian entry for Best Foreign film for the Oscars.

The following piece by E. Nina Rothe in The Huffington Post gives more info about the film and discusses the possibility of being nominated for Best Foreign Film at next year's Academy Awards


Global Culture Explorer
When I Saw You: Could This Palestinian Film Win the Next Foreign Language Oscar?
By E. Nina Rothe

Posted: 10/25/2012

There are two dates that are crucial to all Palestinians. The first is 1948, when the Arab-Israeli War displaced the first wave of perpetual refugees during a time known as the Nakba -- "the disaster." The second is 1967, when those Palestinians living in the West Bank and Gaza were also unsettled by the Six-Day War, families were forever separated and a new Palestinian exodus surged.

But there may be a third date to add to Palestinian history, this time a positive marker of great things to come. In 2013 the Palestinian state may acquire non-member "observer state" status at the UN which would mark a day when, in the words of veteran Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat, "life will not be the same." This coming year could also see the first Palestinian entry on an Oscar short list and quite possibly an Academy Award for Best Foreign Film going to Annemarie Jacir's When I Saw You. Yes, her film is just that good and with Iran withdrawing, the members of the Academy should be looking for a new milestone.

If it sounds like I'm gushing about Jacir's film, don't be mistaken, I am. I've been a huge fan of her work since watching her first feature two year ago. Salt of this Sea was beautiful cinema, with a strong, angry and perfectly right to be so heroine. But her latest, When I Saw You, is cinematic poetry, the perfect blend of stunning cinematography, humanly portrayed characters and a story that hits you with an immediate gut reaction, yet colors your dreams and inhabits your thoughts for days to come.
Perhaps my deep-rooted love of Jacir's work stems from the fact I believe that as individuals, all we really want in our heart is to belong and to be understood. While most filmmakers explore this basic human craving with stories about lovers and romance, Annemarie Jacir has always hit closer to home for me, journeying through the plight of the displaced. And anyone who has ever left their home behind, for however long or by whatever reasons, cannot be left unmoved by Jacir's films.
Both of Jacir's feature films, she confesses, are personal. While Salt of this Sea presented a more political character in Soraya, Jacir admits When I Saw You came out of "such a different place." She continues, "it came out of the depression after being denied entry [into Palestine] and searching in my own life for hope, for hopefulness." The film is an ode of remembrance to a time when Palestinians felt hopeful and Jacir explains the choice of a specific date to open When I Saw You:

"I think 1948 is the year that is important for all Palestinians, it's the year that we lost Palestine, became refugees and I think everybody is affected by that year. But 1967 is more personal to my family because we are from the West Bank, my parents are from Bethlehem and that was the year they lost their country. Those who stayed behind lived under military occupation, those who were outside could not return and all my life I grew up hearing '1967,' all their casual conversations were 'before 1967,' it was always the point of reference -- life before 1967 and life after 1967. So I wanted to do something with that time period, that I also had not seen on screen before."

Out of the magic that turned out to be this year's Abu Dhabi Film Festival, I was asked to moderate a talk with Jacir for an afternoon "in conversation with" this brilliant filmmaking voice from the Arab world. I had heard Jacir talk before, I knew there was still much left unsaid and so much I wanted to ask her. The depth of her films seem to point to a woman way beyond her 30-something years (although she jokes that somewhere on the internet there is a rumor she was born in 1948) and a person who, despite her struggles, has retained a powerfully positive spirit and outlook.

Before Salt of this Sea, "I had the privilege of Palestine" Jacir says during our talk and continues, "then I was denied entry and could no longer return." Finding herself in the position of Tarek -- the 11-year-old protagonist of When I Saw You who longs for home, refusing the boundaries set by those around him -- and many Palestinian refugees "who can just see their homeland across the valley and can no longer reach it," Jacir felt depressed. Yet through the film, four years and a wedding later "to get personal, I was split up from a loved one, who's now my husband," Jacir's situation changed and more recently she's managed to return to Palestine three times, the earliest with filmmaker Ken Loach on his first visit to the country.

When I Saw You, to someone who watches cinema for its impact beyond sheer entertainment, is a revolutionary film. Funded in pre-production by SANAD (the Development and Post-Production Fund of ADFF), it marks important milestones all around for cinema from MENA. Jacir admits, "they supported the film in development, so did the Dubai Film Connection and that's also new for us, for Arab cinema because historically we've had to look towards Europe for financing, we don't get it from our own countries." Jacir calls SANAD "a filmmaker's dream come true" because "they were there, they chose the project" and basically said "go ahead, we trust you and your producers to do the right thing." Then in post-production "SANAD came on board again along with the Thessaloniki Film Festival" and Jacir jokes, "this broke film was saved by a broke country, Greece, in the most generous way." Also noteworthy, there were private investors from the region who loved Salt of this Sea and wanted to be involved in Jacir's next project.

When I ask Jacir what she means with her title, she explains, "When you see something or someone that you've seen maybe a million times but you really see it for the first time because you understand something then that perhaps you didn't understand before." She also gives another explanation as in "seeing Palestine from Jordan, you recognize it over the valley, you see cities at night, the lights... It's so far away and yet so stupidly close."

Jacir is the first to admit that her film could not have existed without her magnificent cast, Mahmoud Asfa and Ruba Blal, along with the divinely sultry Saleh Bakri and the ensemble cast of freedom fighters -- some the sons and daughters of the original, real life Fedayeen. Playing the role of Tarek, the poised and touchingly mature beyond his years Asfa is clearly a darling of the audience in Abu Dhabi and murmurs of "Where's Tarek?" can be overheard on closing night, when the cast and crew accept their well-deserved award for Best Film from the Arab World in the New Horizons category. Asfa is a boy-man who, in Jacir's own words when "not smiling is so heartbreaking, and then when he smiles is like the sun." The stunning Ruba Blal is so wonderfully real in person, when I meet her I have a hard time remembering I'm in the presence of a Palestinian acting legend, albeit a very young one with a great sense of humor.

But ultimately, the triumph of a film lies within the impact it has on the audience, beyond what critics may write or what awards it collects. When I Saw You comes from the collective spirit of a cast and crew who celebrated their win in Abu Dhabi with humble pride, a filmmaker whose vision can easily include realistic portrayals of the games played by an 11-year-old child who doesn't understand labels and the stubbornness of a woman looking for restitution, at any cost.

While Jacir's film pushes us to find the humanity beyond the labels the world imposes on us, there are three I'd personally like to apply to When I Saw You: Beautiful, groundbreaking and deeply, deeply moving.

The film screened on Nov. 4th at the American Film Market in Los Angeles.

Still from When I Saw You and photo of Annemarie Jacir courtesy of the Abu Dhabi Film Festival, used with permission

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Saturday, November 17, 2012

Nov 15 Arabology Podcast: Features Interview with Professional Belly Dancer Adriana M

On the Nov 15, 2012 Episode: Professional belly Dancer Adriana Marrelli talks about the art of Raqs Sharqi and explains distinctly Middle Eastern concepts of beats & rhythms, musical instruments and the art/history of belly dancing.

Download at
Or listen instantly at:

Download at
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Here is a video clip of Adriana during one of her performances:

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Stanford Law School Event on Nov 15: The Qur'an As a Legal Text

My CD Review: DJ Nader - Hizzy Hips in the Mix

DJ Nader Hizzy Hips in the Mix
Reviewed by Ramzi Salti

--All Tracks are FCC CLEAN—

DJ Nader is known for his amazing remixes all over the Arab world. In this compilation—which can be played as independent tracks or as one long uninterrupted megamix (put CD player on ‘Continuous’ instead of ‘Single’)—he remixes both old and new Arabic songs in with emphasis on loud, joyful, rhythmic music that will cause listeners to immediately start shaking their hips (and bellies).

**1. Lebanese pop star Rami Ayash starts the mix with this famous track (4:14)

2. Assi Hallani, another Lebanese music legend, sings about the eyes of his beloved (4:01) .

3. Fares Karam represents the Lebanese countryside and villages; here he sings about a girl in a short skirt (4:16)

4. Rami Ayash featured again singing about his overjoyed heart—remixed with western instruments (3:43)

**5. Wael Kfoury is known in Lebanon for his soft ballads but here he sings in the traditional Dabke genre about the impossibility of rain in August.(4:32)

6. Darine is a Western artist who sings in Arabic; her catchy song here is titled “Yes” (3:53)

7. This is purely DJ Nader’s composition with hip hop vocals in English and Arabic (Englabic) (4:27)

8. Egyptian male vocalist Tamer beseeches his beloved to come closer (3:53)

9. Hasna, a female vocalist from the Gulf, sings about a “Love Messenger” in the Khaliji dialect (4:01)

10. Egyptian living legend Hakim, who has been recording his folksy/shaabi brand of songs for decades, is featured in this remix which was originally recorded as a duet with Latin Pop singer Olga Tanon (4:37)

11. Nourhan’s version of the drum/doumbek-driven classic “Habibi Ya Ainy” (3:41)

12. Lebanese singer Fadel Shaker normally mid-tempo song ‘Ya Ghayeb’ about missing one’s beloved is remixed here by DJ Nader in a way that effectively fuses Eastern and Western beats (3:41)

13. This is an instrumental Dabke piece featuring the sound of the mijwiz—a a type of reed clarinet that sounds a little like the Scottish bagpipes (2:20)

14. A lively song about heaven(3:53)

15. Kahled Issa’s version of a Iraqi folksong whose translated title is “Above the Palm Trees” (4:09)

16. Lively beat Lebanese village tune welcoming guests. Stops in middle, slows down to a rhythmic dabke dance, then the fast paced song reprises (3:50)

**17. DJ Nader’s awesome remix of the Fairuz classic “Nassam Alayna Al-Hawa” featuring the voice of the Lebanese Diva herself (3:49)

18. Fast paced track combining Latin beats with Arabic and Spanish lyrics, based on the Turkish classic “Ya Siti Ya Khityara” (3:20)

19. This 16 second track by Fairuz is how DJ Nader often ends his legendary remixes (0:16)

**My picks: 1, 5, 17 Ramzi Salti

My CD Review: Nancy Ajram - Super Nancy (2012)

Album Review
Ramzi S.
Reviewed 2012-10-18 
-- All Tracks are FCC CLEAN --
Although this is a children’s album—recorded by the Lebanese Princess of Pop Nancy Ajram as a tribute to her two young daughters Milla and Ella— this CD has been getting so much airplay on radio stations all over the Arab world that its target audience—Arab children—has taken a back seat to the mass appeal of these songs.

**1. Ya Banat.(3:10) is the first single off this album and is an ode to daughters and girls, going against patriarchal and outdated concepts that used to favor the birth of sons over daughters. In Egyptian dialect.
2. Bo2 El Katkout (3:13) )[Mouth of the Chicken] Childish track, Arabic nursery rhyme with Egyptian dialect.
**3. Ba2ousi (2:50) [Peakaboo] A guilty pleasure for adults, this addictive song was initially intended for children. In Lebanese Arabic.
4. Sana Helwa Ya Gamil (4:01) [Happy Birthday] is a variation on the Happy Birthday theme. Egyptian dialect..
5. Stouhy (4:38) [Rooftops] Danceable, up beat song with children’s back vocals.
**6. Wez 3einak (3:11) [Check it out] Techno sounding children’s nursery rhyme, complete with baby sounds and children’s chorus. Lebanese.
7. Oulo Hela (4:06) [Say Hey] Egyptian folksong revived and remixed.
**8. Adi El Beida (3:33) [The Egg] A techno dance track that seems geared towards a mass market (not just children).

My picks: 1, 3, 8

Ramzi Salti

My CD Review: Aziz Maraka - Master Copy

Album Review
Ramzi S.
Reviewed 2012-10-18 
-- All Tracks are FCC CLEAN --

Aziz Maraka is one of the leading alternative music composers and performers in Jordan. In 2005 he founded the group RAZZ, (Rock-Arabic-Jazz). "Master Copy" is Maraka’s first officially released CD. It includes both studio tracks as well as live versions of some songs. All tracks are in Arabic.

**1. Bent Ennas.(4:30) is a jazzy sounding tune, upbeat, lots of trumpets.
About a girl who won’t respond to a guy’s affections.
2. Al Atwa (4:08) Begins dramatically with symphonic sounding orchestra, nay plying (flute), drums. Slows down into a mawwal (lamentation) which then picks up.
**3. Ibki (Live) (5:20) Oud playing begins this ballad, along with piano, vocals with echo, slow tempo.
4. Leish habibi (live) (6:21) Slow track, lots of piano playing, soft jazz, grand ballad-like segments.
5. Laa (live) (4:38) Begins with piano and violin; sounds sad. Symphonic instrumental (no vocals).
**6. Amman (6:56) This is Maraka’s tribute song for Jordan’s capital Amman. Slow and haunting. Powerful vocals.
7. Bent Ennas (live) (7:43) Live version of track 1 above. Extended, longer. Version.
**8. Bahki Lahali (live) (3:30) Title means “I Speak to Myself.” Sad slow track about being away from one’s country.
9. Possessed (4:44) Up-tempo, nice beat, combines eastern and western instruments. Showcases Maraka’s vocal ability.

My picks: 1, 3, 8

Ramzi Salti

Monday, November 12, 2012

New Anthology Published: Al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here

Nov 8 'Arabology' Podcast Ft Interview with Torange Yeghiazarian, Artistic Director of 'ReOrient Festival of Short Plays' in San Francisco

The sixth episode of the 3rd Season of 'Arabology' (aired Nov 8, 2012) includes an interview with Torange Yeghiazarian, Founding Artistic Director of Golden Thread Productions which is currently staging the ReOrient Festival of Short Plays in San Francisco (in English) which explore the Middle East from November 1–18, 2012. Also includes alternative music from the Arab world accompanied by commentary, in English, by your host DJ Ramzi.

R. Salti (left) with Torange Yeghiazarian at Stanford

Playlist for Arabology Thursday, 8 November 2012 3pm - 5pm DJ: Ramzi S.
Artist/ Track/ Album/ Label
1. El Khalil, Omeima/ Ya Helou/ Ya/ Forward Music
2. Egyptian Project/ Anta Ana/ Paleo Festival Village Du Monde 2012/ Disques Office
3. Samsa/ Nsima (Breath Of Life)/ Alem Jdid (New World)/ Skander Guetari
4. Interview with Torange Yeghiazarian (25 min)/ Arabology/ KZSU
5. Maraka, Aziz/ Ibki (Live)/ Master Copy/ Cd Baby
6. Soultan, Ahmed/ Itim/ Arabic Beat/ Putumayo World Music
7. Ajram, Nancy/ Ya Banat / Super Nancy/ Emi
8. Slimani, Ali/ Lirah/ Arabic Beat/ Putumayo World Music
9. Pangia/ Turkish Delight- 9/8 Drum Solo/ West Of East Vol. 5/ Pangia Vol 5
10. El Mansoury, Hiba / Rima/ Sah El Nom/ Murr Television Lebanon
11. Abu Ghazaleh, Tamer/ 7ob/ Mir'ah/ eka3
12. Aburedwan, Ramzi/ Raja (Return)/ Reflections/ Riverboat Records
13. Broukar/ Mawal/ Paleo Festival Village Du Monde 2012/ Disques Office
14. El Khalil, Omeima/ Ouhibbouka Akthar/ Ya/ Forward Music
15. Khalife, Marcel And Mahmoud Darwish In Damascus/Suqut Al-Qamar/ Nagam Records, Inc.
16. Mashrou' Leila/ Imm El Jacket/ El Hal Romancy/ Mashrou' Leila
17. Zeid & The Wings/ Aasfeh/ Zeid & The Wings/Lebanese Underground

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Stanford Event: Lives Under Drones (Nov 11, 2012)

Podcast: November 1 Episode of 'Arabology' Ft Author Soha Al-Jurf

The 4th episode of the 3rd season of my radio show 'Arabology' (aired Nov 1, 2012) includes an interview with Soha Al-Jurf, author of 'Even My Voice Is Silence.' Also includes new alternative music from the Arab world accompanied by commentary, in English, by your host DJ Ramzi.

Playlist for Arabology Thurs, 1 Nov 2012 3pm - 5pm DJ: Ramzi S.
Artist/ Track/ Album/ Label
1. El Khalil, Omeima/ Leh?/ Ya/ Forward Music
2. Watcha Clan/ Osfour (Bird)/ Arabic Beat/ Putumayo World Music
3. Trio Joubran/ Nawwar/ Paleo Festival Village Du Monde 2012--Moyen Orient/ Disques Office
4. Laroussi, Djamel/ Kifach Hilti (What’S The Outcome?)/ Arabic Beat/ Putumayo World Music
5. Samsa/ Alem Jdid (New World)/ Alem Jdid (New World)/ Skander Guetari
6. Maraka, Aziz/ Possessed/ Master Copy/ Cd Baby
7. Ajram, Nancy/ Ya Banat / Super Nancy/ Emi
8. Slimani, Ali/ Lirah/ Arabic Beat/ Putumayo World Music
9. Interview with Soha Al-Jurf/IPart 1/ Arabology/ KZSU
10. Dam/ Mali Huriye/ Paleo/ Disques Office
11. Interview with Soha Al-Jurf/ Part 2/ Arabology/ KZSU
12. Nour/ Narbat/ Arabic Beat/ Putumayo World Music
13. Mashrou' Leila/ Imm El Jacket/ El Hal Romancy EP/ Mashrou' Leila
14. Pangia/ Samra/ West Of East Vol. 5/ Pangia Vol 5
15. Baba Zula/ Temptation/ Paleo Festival Village Du Monde 2012/ Disques Office
16. Al-Jundi, Zein/ Ajmal Gharam (The Most Beautiful Passion)/ Arabic Beat/ Putumayo World Music
17. Aburedwan, Ramzi/ Gitans En Orient (Gypsies In The East)/ Reflections/ Riverboat Records

* Previous Arabology Podcasts:
*Arabology Blog is at
*Arabology Facebook Page:

'Casablanca Mon Amour' Screening in San Francisco on November 10

A special preview screening of CASABLANCA MON AMOUR will take place on Saturday Nov 10 at 2:30pm at the New People Cinema in San Francisco.  This screening is organized as part of the San Francisco Film Society's Cinema By The Bay Festival.

Tickets for the screening can be purchased now via the link below.
LINK to SFFS page about the film and about the screening,942,1398&pageid=3216

A film that replaces myths with humanity and humor

"Casablanca Mon Amour offers an entertaining road map between yesteryear's Hollywood and todayʼs Morocco." —Dr. Jack Shaheen, author of Reel Bad Arabs and former CBS news consultant on Middle East affairs.



A non-traditional road movie exploring a Moroccan perspective on the entwined

relationship between Hollywood and the Arab/Muslim World.


Casablanca Mon Amour is a modern road movie that encapsulates the more complex and fractured nature of living in a world where TV and wars compete for headlines and occupy imaginations.  Using movies as a road map between yesterdayʼs Hollywood and todayʼs Morocco, Casablanca Mon Amour offers a Moroccan perspective on the long and entwined relationship between Hollywood and The Arab/Muslim World.  Casablanca Mon Amour offers more than a dry critique of the impact of media on culture. Instead, the film takes a human and humorous look at the effects Hollywood films have on peopleʼs imaginations and affords Moroccanʼs (our movie set ʻextrasʼ) an opportunity to talk back—which they do in intelligent, witty and wildly ingenious ways.

Filmed in Morocco ! 79 mins ! In Arabic & French with English subtitles

Mediterranean Studies Forum at Stanford Hosts Lively Events, Discussions and Speakers

Pictures from above event:

Nuray Mert, Lucan Way, Ali Yaycioglu

Lucan Way, Ali Yaycioglu, Lina Khatib


Doorway to Islamic Civilization Workshops Begin Nov 9-11, 2012 (Oakland, CA)


Oakland, CA

November 9, 10, 11, 2012

Islamic civilization boasts an intellectual, artistic, and cultural heritage that spans continents and centuries.   The gradations of shape, color, taste, texture, and sound that exist within and between Muslim peoples and cultures are as rich and diverse as their ideas and attitudes, as well as their languages, races, and ethnicities.  Out of this fertile and potent mix of elements emerged artforms and practices that can enrich and beautify our lives.

Zawaya thus launches an original event:  "Doorway to Islamic Civilization", a weekend collection of hands-on workshops on Islamic art and culture set against the current social backdrop of Islamophobia.  These workshops are meant to give those interested the opportunity to get to know Islam and Muslims by providing a safe space within which to explore and experience the Islamic sense of beauty embodied in art, crafts, music, architecture, and more.  In addition to the workshops, there will be a film showing of "Islamic Art: Mirror of the Invisible World" followed by a panel discussion between the filmmaker, Michael Wolfe, and Islamic art and architecture experts.  The Mevlevi Order of America will also be present to offer a Dhikr (a devotional act) by Mevlevi musicians and dervish turners.

Workshops are categorized into:  Art & Architecture, Arts & Crafts, Calligraphy, Lifestyle & Culture, Music, Writing, and Youth (5-15 years old).

This event is co-sponsored by The Afghan Coalition, The Arab Cultural and Community Center of San Francisco (ACCC), Arab Resource and Organizing Center (AROC), Aslan Media, The Center for Islamic Studies at the Graduate Theological Union (GTU)in Berkeley,  Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-SFBA), Interfaith Coalition for Immigrant Rights (CLUE CA), Islamic Cultural Center of Northern California (ICCNC), Islamic Network Group (ING), and Ziya Art Studio.


Zawaya Film Showing: "Islamic Art: Mirror of the Invisible World"

November 09, 2012 7:30 PM
This is my event.
The "Doorway to Islamic Civilization" weekend-long event will kick off with a beautiful film: Islamic Art: Mirror of the Invisible World, followed by a panel discussion including filmmaker Michael Wolfe, and Islamic art and architecture experts Dr. Heba Mostafa, R. Hussain, Fateme Montazeri, and Arash Shirinbab. The panel discussion will be followed by live music by the Aswat Ensemble and refreshments.
[View Event]

Workshop AA1: Islamic Ornamentation: Geometric Patterns

November 10, 2012 10:30 AM
This is my event.
Learn traditional techniques using simple tools to create geometric shapes and tessellations widely used in Islamic art. At the end of the workshop, you will have created your own artwork in traditional blue and gold.
[View Event]

Workshop AC1: Collaborative Painting: Lyrical Line

November 10, 2012 10:30 AM
This is my event.
You will be painting collaboratively with artist Salma Arastu and other participants to create four paintings with Qur'anic verses related to unity, peace, freedom, or love using painted Arabic calligraphy she calls "Lyrical Line". You will contribute to the creation of the artwork by writing or painting your own expressions in Arabic or your own language and style. No previous painting experience required.
[View Event]

Workshop AC4: Islamic Patterns: Decoupage a Box

November 10, 2012 10:30 AM
This is my event.
In this workshop, you will explore the world of Islam through one facet of its material culture; in this case, decoupage. You will first be taken on a brief tour of decoupage in Islamic art, after which you will be guided to create a one-of-a kind object of your own, which you can take home.
[View Event]

Workshop M1: Oud & Maqam

November 10, 2012 10:30 AM
This is my event.
This workshop is geared towards those who are able to read notes, and already know how to play a plucked string instrument (such as a guitar). You will be gaining exposure to four maqaamaat,, all of which have Arab quarter tones and a sama'i. You will be provided with sheet music and a USB drive with two recordings of the sama'i that you can practice along to. Youth are welcome, but need to be advanced musicians.
[View Event]

Workshop W2: Processing Islamophobia

November 10, 2012 10:30 AM
This is my event.
This workshop is for anyone interested in writing about and discussing Islamophobia. This includes men and women, young and old, persons who have experienced this and persons who have not, people of all faiths and nationalities. The workshop will begin with a short introductory session in which participants discuss what Islamophobia is, as it occurs in the media and elsewhere. Next they will write down some of their feelings and/or thoughts on the topic, including (but not limited to): their perceptions of the US media, their own experiences with hatred or fear of Islam, ways they handle Islamophobia when it arises both with regard to others and inside themselves, and ways the US might be influenced to become more tolerant and accepting of Muslims, at home and abroad. Writings will then be shared and discussed. Workshop participants will hopefully emerge more aware of Islamophobia and the role of the media in creating it, more conscious of their own feelings and ways of handling it, and more likely to deal with it effectively when they encounter it, whether in themselves or in other people.
[View Event]

Workshop C2: Intro to Riq'a Style Calligraphy

November 10, 2012 11:00 AM
This is my event.
This workshop is an introduction to the different styles of calligraphy with a hands-on lesson on the basic elements of the Riq'a style. You will learn how to write letters in Riq'a calligraphy. It is a great first time lesson for anyone interested in taking a step toward the beautiful art of Arabic calligraphy. While it would be beneficial for you to know the Arabic alphabet, it is not required.
[View Event]

Workshop AC2: Turning Rumi: Verses of Unity & Love

November 10, 2012 1:30 PM
This is my event.
You will be creating an original cut-out of a Whirling Rumi, a whirling dervish figure, from a stencil. You will then paint this cut-out and write verses from Rumi. The finished product will be for you to take home to hang or display on a table. No previous painting experience required.
[View Event]

Workshop AC5: Ottoman Marbling

November 10, 2012 1:30 PM
This is my event.
In this workshop, you will be introduced to Islamic bookbinding and marbling techniques, after which you will be given the opportunity to explore marbling on your own and in small groups. The end product will be beautiful marbled papers to take home. No previous experience required.
[View Event]

Workshop C1: Intro to Nasta'liq Style Calligraphy

November 10, 2012 1:30 PM
This is my event.
In this workshop, you will learn to recognize the key features of the Nasta'liq style of Arabic/Persian calligraphy, become familiar with traditional calligraphy tools, and learn to write letters and words using the Nasta'liq style. You will leave the workshop with your own attempts at the Nasta'liq style, and have your name or a word of your choice written for you in Nasta'liq style as a work of art from the artist/instructor. No previous calligraphy experience required.
[View Event]

Workshop LC3: The Art of Henna

November 10, 2012 1:30 PM
This is my event.
In this workshop, you will learn the technique of applying henna, and creating your own designs. Skills taught will enable you to become a henna artist yourself! Henna application will be on the hand. No previous experience necessary.
[View Event]

Workshop W1: Find Your Authentic Voice Through Writing Your Spiritual Story

November 10, 2012 1:30 PM
This is my event.
In this workshop, you will be engaged in a discussion aimed at exploring your personal relationship with religion and spirituality. You will be encouraged to share openly about the similarities and differences between your spiritual and religious experiences and practices, as well as how religion and spirituality influence your sense of identity. You will then be given techniques to help you write your own monologue that reflect the insights you have gained through workshop participation. You will complete a brief monologue, which you will then be encouraged to share with the class.
[View Event]

Workshop M3: The Most Beautiful Names of God in Song

November 10, 2012 2:00 PM
This is my event.
In this workshop, you will learn the Muslim practice of invoking God's 99 names, which are referred to as the most beautiful names of Allah. It is Muslim custom to recite these 99 names in different forms, including in songs of praise of God (zikr/ dhikr). This class aims to teach you to sing some of the most beautiful names of God, while explaining their meaning. You will also learn the different styles of music practiced in Muslim worship and in celebrations.
[View Event]

Workshop AC3: Art on Glass

November 10, 2012 3:30 PM
This is my event.
In this workshop, you will learn glass painting techniques using Middle Eastern decorative designs. Small glass containers will be provided for you to paint on to apply those techniques. The finished product will be yours to take home.
[View Event]

Workshop M2: Intro to Forms & Functions of Music in Islam

November 10, 2012 3:30 PM
This is my event.
This workshop will familiarize you with Islamic devotional and ceremonial music, including Qur'anic recitation and Sufi and ceremonial chanting, which occupy an important space in Islamic worship rituals and religious celebrations. You will learn the different musical forms in Islam and their function in religious practice. You will learn to sing excerpts from the most prominent and common chants and songs. Musicians will be present to allow you to experience the music live.
[View Event]

Workshop LC2: Hijabi for a Day: Unveiling the Veil

November 10, 2012 4:00 PM
This is my event.
This workshop is a rare opportunity to partake in a discourse that reflects the complexity and diversity of Muslim women. You will be able to explore experiences and attitudes surrounding the veil or "hijab" in Islam and Muslim life in America. It will shed light on the experience of wearing the veil and keeping it on, wearing it and taking it off, and not having worn it all, and the reasons, attitudes, and consequences surrounding such choices. This will be facilitated through a panel discussion of different women who have each made different choices vis a vis the veil. The workshop will also provide you a chance to see the veil in a different light: Not only as a religious garment, but also a cultural one, and, finally, a fashion statement that is as much about self-expression as, say, Lady Gaga's meat dress is. The pièce de résistance of the workshop is your chance to wear the veil stylishly with the help of a "hijabi" fashionista stylist, and to be photographed in it in a fun photo booth! You will get to take home a digital copy of your picture and post it on your social media accounts!
[View Event]

Workshop C3: Intro to Thuluth Style Calligraphy

November 10, 2012 4:30 PM
This is my event.
This workshop will provide you with a brief history of Islamic calligraphy, teach you the basic principles of Thuluth style so that you may distinguish it from other styles, and will teach you to write your name and basic words in the Thuluth style.
[View Event]

Workshop AA2: The Arabesque in Islamic Art and Architecture

November 10, 2012 5:30 PM
This is my event.
This hands-on workshop will explore the principles and history of the arabesque in Islamic art and architecture by exploring different styles of its form generation. You will leave the class with a stencil of your own design that you can then use for any craft project (for stencil printing on t-shirts, gift wrap paper, interior decoration, etc.)
[View Event]

Workshop LC1: Perfume and Incense of the Islamic Golden Age

November 10, 2012 5:30 PM
This is my event.
In this workshop, you will explore the role of scent in Islamic civilization. You will learn about the history of perfume use during the Islamic golden age and also be introduced to the Muslim scientists who revolutionized perfumery by discovering techniques that are used until now in the industry. You will get to examine common scents used in Muslim culture and use essential oils to formulate personal perfume and incense concoctions. No previous experience necessary.
[View Event]

Estaughfur'llah Dhikr by the Mevlevi Order of America

November 10, 2012 7:30 PM
This is my event.
The Dervish tradition of whirling and sacred Turkish music provides the foundation of the Mevlevi dhikr (devotional act). The Estaughfur'llah Dhikr is a dynamic living prayer of forgiveness and remembrance of oneness, integrating chanting, movement, and music as a participatory experience.
[View Event]

Workshop M7: Persian Music on Various Instruments

November 11, 2012 9:00 AM
This is my event.
This workshop is designed for advanced musicians who want to learn how to play Persian music on their respective instrument(s). You will gain an appreciation for the qualities of Persian music, and learn to play a few Persian pieces. No previous experience with Persian music necessary.
[View Event]

Workshop AC6: Intro to Islamic Ceramics: Make Your Own!

November 11, 2012 10:00 AM
This is my event.
This workshop is for adults who have an interest in exploring the motifs, history, and forms of Islamic ceramics. You will first be presented with a brief history of Islamic ceramics. Thereafter, you will explore the world of ceramic design, create your own motif, transfer it to the plate, and paint it with 'traditional' colors. No previous experience required.
[View Event]

Workshop C4: Intro to Deewani Style Calligraphy

November 11, 2012 10:00 AM
This is my event.
This workshop will provide you with an understanding of pen, paper, and ink in calligraphy; preparing the pen; and learning the Deewani style of writing and techniques. You will have a chance to write and practice in class. No previous experience necessary.
[View Event]

Workshop Y1: Geometric Concepts in Islamic Art for Kids!

November 11, 2012 10:00 AM
This is my event.
This workshop is a glance into the never ending possibilities in geometric design. Students will learn about the significance of geometric design in Islamic art, and will then have the ability to create their own unique design using the principles of geometry. Finished designs will turn into beautiful decorative tiles embellished with the student's personal creative touch. The child will also gain a deeper appreciation and understanding for the use of geometric design in Islamic art. Students should be familiar with using a compass, and should have an understanding of basic measurements (center, radius, diameter, etc.). Familiarity with the use of paints is also important.
[View Event]

Workshop M4: Christmas Carols from the Arab World

November 11, 2012 10:30 AM
This is my event.
This workshop introduces you to Christmas carols from Lebanon that consist of Arabic texts adapted to Western melodies. You will learn to sing Christmas carols that have a familiar Western tune such as Jingle Bells, O Come all Ye Faithul, and others all in Arabic. There are no prerequisites for this class. Just come and enjoy learning Christmas songs in the Arabic language!
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Workshop Y3: Intro to Middle Eastern Percussion for Kids!

November 11, 2012 10:30 AM
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This workshop will allow kids to learn basic sounds and techniques used for playing drums in the Arab style. We will work together on a few fun rhythms used in popular and folk dance music of the Middle East. No previous experience with drums necessary.
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Workshop LC4: Common Islamic Expressions

November 11, 2012 11:00 AM
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This workshop is designed to teach you the most common Islamic expressions that Muslims use daily in different contexts. You will learn the correct pronunciation, meaning, the proper usage in the different contexts, and will get to practice it with other participants. You will walk away from the workshop knowing how to insert such expressions in your conversations to surprise your Muslim friends, or if you don't have any, to use them in making many!
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Workshop W3: Women Writers' Workshop

November 11, 2012 11:00 AM
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This workshop is for women to engage in a dialogue through creative writing. This dialogue will highlight similarities between Muslim women and women of other faiths. Through prompts from books written by Muslim women, you will learn how to write creatively to convey your thoughts and passions.
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Workshop AC7: Five Characteristics of Islamic Art: A Hands-On Painting Workshop

November 11, 2012 1:30 PM
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In this workshop, you will gain an understanding of the major characteristics of Islamic art. Through examples and explanation, you then move to painting with acrylics on fabric, your own creative juxtaposition of any or all of the five characteristics, through use of pre-cut stencils. You will be able to take home a completed art project. Please come to class in clothes that welcome paint stains.
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Workshop C5: Reed/Bamboo Pen Making

November 11, 2012 1:30 PM
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This workshop will equip you with skills on how to make a calligraphy pen from reed or bamboo, and how to write beautifully with it. No previous experience necessary.
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Workshop M5: Christian and Muslim Hymns from the Arab World

November 11, 2012 1:30 PM
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This workshop introduces you to Christian and Islamic hymns from the Arab world. You will get to examine musical similarities and differences between the two traditions. You will learn to sing religious hymns in Arabic from the Christian and Islamic traditions in the Arab world. There are no prerequisites for this workshop.
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Workshop M8: Intro to Middle Eastern Percussion

November 11, 2012 1:30 PM
This is my event.
This workshop will allow you to learn basic sounds and techniques used for playing drums in the Arab style. We will work together on rhythms used in popular and folk dance music of the Middle East. No previous experience with drums necessary.
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Workshop Y2: Mosaic Tiling and the Concept of Reflection for Kids!

November 11, 2012 1:30 PM
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This workshop will focus on two aspects of Islamic art: One being the technical aspect of mosaic tiling, and the other the important concept of reflection. Students will learn some of the symbolism behind the mosaic tiling, and then will work on piecing together their own work of art. The framed mirror will not only help them reflect upon themselves externally, but will mirror an internal reflection, as it is decorated with the student's imagination and creativity. Students are expected to have a basic understanding of the use of paint and glue.
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Workshop Y4: Henna Style: Temporary Tattoos for Kids!

November 11, 2012 1:30 PM
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This workshop is for children ages 8-16 who are interested in exploring Near Eastern culture and design. Kids will be shown a short slideshow of different styles of henna. From Morocco to India, Muslims have practiced this ancient art, and the students will then be asked to talk about which style is their favorite and why, and then they will be allowed to experiment with henna tattoos.
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Workshop M6: Advanced Qanun: Arab, Azari, Persian, & Turkish

November 11, 2012 2:00 PM
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This workshop is an exploration of Arab, Azari, Persian, and Turkish music on the qanun for advanced qanun players. We will refresh our knowledge of the qanun and how it is made, and learn maqams on the qanun, transposing maqamat, the relationship of different maqamat to each other, playing songs in different keys, and appreciating that every nationality has its own accent in rhythms. While music sheets will be provided, the ability to read notes is not necessary.
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Workshop Y5: Christmas Carols from the Arab World

November 11, 2012 3:30 PM
This is my event.
This workshop introduces students to Christmas carols from the Arab World that consist of Arabic texts adapted to Western melodies. Children will learn to sing Christmas carols in Arabic adapted to Western tunes such as Jingle Bells, O Come All Ye Faithful, and others. There are no prerequisites for this class. Children can just come and enjoy learning Christmas songs in the Arabic language.
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10th Anniversary of Dr. Ramzi Salti's Arabology Program Features All Episodes on Soundcloud + YouTube (Click here)

All 13 seasons of Dr. Ramzi Salti's  Arabology  podcasts  are now available on Soundcloud, for a total of 101 episodes. Additionally, al...