Showing posts with label Iraq. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Iraq. Show all posts

Friday, November 23, 2018

Ramzi Salti Moderates Film Discussion of "From Baghdad to the Bay" in Oakland, California

Watch the talk at https://youtu.be/9HVkecq0KMo

This discussion following the screening of the award winning documentary "From Baghdad to the Bay" at the Arab Film Festival 2018 was recorded on October 19, 2018 at the New Parkway in Oakland, California. It was moderated by Dr. Ramzi Salti and Co-presented by Human Rights Watch San Francisco and the International Rescue Committee in Northern California. Q&A session was moderated by Stanford Lecturer Dr. Ramzi Salti ft Director Erin Palmquist + star of the film Ghazwan Alsharif + Christine Lemonda, Deputy Director of Programs at the International Rescue Committee in Northern California. Special thanks to Serge Bakalian and The Arab Film and Media Institute for organizing the Arab Film Festival, the nation’s oldest and largest Festival of Arab films! Also many thanks to Alexander Farrow (AFF) and to Scott Schwerdtfeger for allowing me to use video highlights from his footage. "From Baghdad to The Bay" follows the epic journey of Ghazwan Alsharif, an Iraqi refugee and former translator for the US military. After being wrongfully accused of being a double agent he is ostracized from his family and country. The film follows Ghazwan as he struggles to rebuild his life in the San Francisco Bay Area.

You can watch discussion excerpts below or at https://youtu.be/9HVkecq0KMo


You can watch the trailer for the film below or at https://vimeo.com/155901926

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

He Was My Friend: A Poem by Karim Al Iraqi (Translated by Ramzi Salti)

"Kana Sadiqi" كان صديقي [He Was My Friend] is an Arabic poem written by Iraqi poet Karim Aliraqi كريم العراقي  aka Karim Odeh  كريم عوده, about finding himself in the role of intermediary between a couple (two friends of his) whose love he had once witnessed but who were now breaking up. The poet speaks of his dilemma in the video below then goes on to recite the poem in Arabic. 
Poem translated into English by Dr. Ramzi Salti.

قصيدة "كان صديقي" للشاعر كريم العراقي (كريم عوده) يخاطب بها حبيبين افترقا وكان هو الوسيط بينهما والذي يشكى كل منهما له همه وسبب بعده عن حبيبه الآخر.
ترجم القصيدة الى الانجليزية الدكتور رمزي سلطي


This video shows the poet, Karim Al Iraqi, reading his poem in 2014: https://youtu.be/4OmUsp78A



He was my friend and she was eternally his.
Their love story, revered by everyone
How could that story, once so sweet,
Transform into quarrels, desertion, neglect?
And I, the witness, wounded in their battle
Caught between their sharp, fiery swords

I saw him, looking ill, pale, lost
His heart shattered, bleeding from regret
Be my doctor, he said, and bear my pain
Have you seen her? Did she speak of me?
Was her sorrow deeper than mine?
Does that same perfume still engulf her
Or has she changed it, repulsed by memory
I lost her like a fool loses everything
As if I had cut off my own hand.
My friend wept; she had been eternally his
That love that legends are made of.

She met me, her complexion pale
A burning candle, consumed by fire,
Wounded by the mere mention of his name
She clutched my hand, cried me a storm
He is the one, she said, who broke me
Who drenched my life in sorrow and woe
Yet I wish him well, unconditionally,
As a mother would love her child.
Tell me is he still in agony
For I fear what despair may do to him
To his fragility, to his being.
I fear for him and not myself.
Tell him that the wind has swept away,
From the harbor, a woman he once loved
Ask him to seek distant shores
For my ship he sank, my very security
Eternally lost now to he whose love
Had been my home and anchor

This story of ours, has it been told?
She talked, he talked, until the dawn
My hand, holding the phone, incessantly.
Return to each other or break apart forever
Two fiery swords, cutting me,
Bleeding the life right out of me
You have become, alas, motherless children




كان صديقي وكانت حبـَّه الأبدي
بل كان حبُّهما حكايةَ البلدِ
واستغرب الناسُ كيف القصة انقلبت
إلى خصامٍ، إلى هجرٍ، إلى نكدِ
أما أنا الشاهدُ المجروحُ بينهما
سيفان من نار يختصمان في كبدي
.....................
هو التقاني مريضاً.. تائهَ القدمِ
محطمَ القلب.. أدمى اصبع الندمِ
"كن يا صديقي طبيبي واحتمل ألمي"
هل قابلتكَ؟ وهل حدّثتَها عني؟
هل حزنـُها كان أقسى؟ أم أنا حزني؟
وذلك العطرُ هل لا زال يغمرها؟
أم غيرتهُ؟ نعم، مستاءة ٌ مني
خسرتـُها يا لطيشي لا بديل لها
ماذا فعلتُ لو قطعتُ يدي؟"
بكى صديقي.. كانت حبــَّهُ الأبدي
بل كان حبـُّهما أسطورة البلدِ
.....................
هي التقتني وقد شحُبت ملامحُها
وكما يذوبُ الشمعُ في النارِ
كان اسمُه لو مرَّ يجرحها
مسكتْ يدي وبكتْ كإعصارِ
" هو الذي دمـَّر أحلامي
هو الذي أمطرني همّا
لكنني أوصيك خيراً به
كأنني صرتُ له أمـّا
بالله هل ما زال مضطرباً؟
أخشى عليه نوبة اليأس ِ
إحساسُه العالي سيقتلـُهُ
خوفي عليه لا على نفسي
بلـِّـغه أن الريحَ قد خطفت
بنتاً على الميناءِ يعشقها
وليتجه لشواطئ ٍ أخرى
فسفينتي بيديهِ أغرقها
سَرق الأمانُ وضاع للأبدِ
من خلتـُهُ سقفي ومعتمدي"
.....................
تلك الحكاية ُ هل مرَّتْ على أحدِ؟
وكلـّمتني.. وكلـّمني.. لصبح غدِ
ما فارق الهاتفُ السهرانُ كفَّ يدي
عودا لبعضٍ أو انفصلا إلى الأبدِ
سيفان من نارٍ تختصمان في كبدي
ففيكما الآن شوقُ الأمِّ للولد
This poem was set to music and recorded by Iraqi singer Kazem El Saher. Listen below or at https://youtu.be/4A0jxpTcTZ0:

Friday, January 29, 2016

Arabology Interviews Mona Damluji, Associate Dean + Director of the Markaz Resource Center at Stanford


Dr. Ramzi Salti with Dr. Mona Damluji at Stanford

Arabology has just interviewed Mona Damluji, Associate Dean and Director of The Markaz: Resource Center at Stanford University, who spoke about her background, work, research, experience, identity, and her relationship with the Arabic language.  She also highlighted her upcoming talk at Stanford University on Feb 3, 2016.   You can listen or download the interview below or at https://soundcloud.com/arabology/monadamluji


Mona is a liberal arts educator, cultural activist and scholar with expertise in the Arab Middle East and broader Muslim World.  Mona received her PhD from the University of California, Berkeley and was the Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow in Asian & Islamic Visual Culture at Wheaton College in Massachusetts.

Mona regularly curates and organizes exhibits and programs featuring the work of artists and activists linked to Muslim and Arab communities and countries. Major recent projects have included "Open Shutters Iraq" at UC Berkeley and "Arab Comics: 90 Years of Popular Visual Culture" at Brown University. Mona has worked as the educational outreach director for the Arab Film Festival, organizing an annual festival screening for students and teachers in San Francisco, Oakland and Berkeley. Her exhibition and book reviews appear in Jadaliyya, AMCA and the International Journal of Islamic Architecture. Mona's publications also appear in the Journal of Urban History, Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa and the Middle East, and Subterranean Estates: the Life Worlds of Oil and Gas.

Mona will be speaking at Stanford on Feb 3, 2016 about "Baghdad's Deep Dilemma: Sectarianism and Urban Segregation under Occupation." Her talk will discuss the sectarian-based segregation that has shaped urbanism in Baghdad is a direct outcome of the 2003 U.S.-led invasion and occupation of Iraq. The "post"-occupied city is characterized by the normalization of concrete “security” blast-walls that choke urban circulation and sever communities. The notorious blast walls -- or "Bremer Walls" -- perpetuate and intensify conditions of urban segregation. As the summer's surge of anti-government protests in Baghdad demonstrate, the short-sighted nature of this militarized solution to sectarian-based violence has proven to be a superficial and unsustainable fix to the deep dilemma of sectarian segregation codified in Iraq’s political system. This presentation will examine the context for recent public dissent on the streets of Baghdad through the story of the capital city's fragmentation between 2006 and 2007.



Sunday, October 4, 2015

Founder of National Youth Orchestra of Iraq Zuhal Sultan at Stanford



Zuhal Sultan, founder of the National Youth Orchestra of Iraq , gave a series of talks at Stanford this week that centerred on the way she has managed to bring together a group of 43 young musicians from all across Iraq - Shia, Sunni, Kurdish, Christian - to perform together in perfect harmony.

Zuhal gave a talk in Arabic at noon where she spoke about her journey. The talk was introduced by Stanford Professor Alexander Key and sponsored by the Abbasi Program in Islamic Studies, the Stanford Language Center, and the Euphrates Institute. That talk was followed by a lecture, in English, that was additionally sponsored by AMENDS and included a musical intro by the Stanford Middle East Ensemble. See pics below.


Zuhal Sultan with Professor Alexander Key

Zuhal Sultan at Stanford


Zuhal also granted ِArabology radio host Dr, Ramzi Salti an interview which was recorded at KZSU 90.1 FM.  You can hear the interview below or at https://soundcloud.com/arabology/zuhalsultan


ABOUT ZUHAL SULTAN:

Zuhal Sultan (Arabic: زحل سلطان‎; born 1991 in Baghdad, Iraq) is an Iraqi pianist and activist who founded the National Youth Orchestra of Iraq at the age of 17.  Born in Baghdad, Zuhal Sultan is the youngest of a scientific family of two boys and two girls. Both of her parents obtained their Ph.D degrees in natural sciences from universities in the United Kingdom. She started piano studies at the age of six with the help of a private tutor, then she auditioned to join the Music and Ballet School of Baghdad at the age of 9. After the departure from Iraq of many artists and intellectuals as a result of the 2003 Iraq War, Zuhal was left without a piano teacher. She therefore taught herself, as well as the younger students in her piano class. Despite all these difficulties, Zuhal has performed concerts both at home and abroad, including Jordan, France, Switzerland and at  the Royal Festival Hall in London as a member of the Leonard Bernstein Mass orchestra. Zuhal has won many awards including the
2015 Euphrates Visionary of The Year (see video below or at https://youtu.be/XWAUgDz4iqE)




Ramzi Salti's Arabology Radio Show Counts Down Top 20 Indie Arabic Songs of 2018

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