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Rap and the Arab Spring

Interview with Arab rappers Ibn Thabit and Deeb

Part 1 and Part 2 and Part 3

Full Event, Rap and the Arab Spring

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Rana Nessim

Rana Nessim

Rosemary Bechler, editor

Rosemary Bechler


We would like to thank the Mulberry Trust for their generous support of our work

You tell us

We want to meet you. We need you to tell us what inspired you to stand up, what led you to fight, and what sustained you until victory. This revolution, more than any other, is in the hands of ordinary citizens who are willing to do extraordinary things.

We hope that as you read what others have to say you will be inspired to share your own thoughts with us. Whether it is a passing observation that means something to you about how your life has changed in these months, or an extended essay on your revolutionary ideals, we want to hear from you.

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Critical citizenship for critical times

The author reflects on critical thinking, citizenship, and what contribution higher education might make to Egypt’s future during these turbulent times.

This week's window on the Middle East - April 14, 2014

Arab Awakening's columnists offer their weekly perspective on what is happening on the ground in the Middle East. Leading the week, Contempt and humiliation greet the Pope's visit to the Holy Land.

Foreign aid: development or 'de-development'?

Foreign aid has only incapacitated Palestinians and made them ever more dependent on the west. The aid industry must choose between either blindly subsidizing oppression or recognize what is actually taking place and cease its support. 

The clampdown on universities in Sudan

Sudanese universities are growing extremely hostile towards students and the violence is only escalating. If no agreement is reached, it is very likely that there will be much more bloodshed. 

The Egyptian counter revolution: the Gulf connection

Maged Mandour

Since Egypt, as a rentier state, can ignore popular demands and rely on coercion, continuous financial support from Arab states, similar to international financial support, will only act as insulation for the regime from popular pressure.

On Lebanese sovereignty

The issue of what sovereignty means, and how it can be enforced, should not be confined to the defensive sphere alone. Increasing resentment against Syrians in the domestic sphere, and offhand statements about the army versus the law, do not augur well.

Jordanians split over the war in Syria

Nikita Malik

Syrian state media accuses Jordanians of being rebel allies but this is to oversimplify. Many Jordanians do support the insurgency against Bashar al-Assad. But some oppose it and many others have grown skeptical as the spillover from Syria to Jordan increases.

Being a "boogieman"

Maged Mandour

The author shares his personal experience of transformation, living abroad, after a revolution kicks off in his home country and hopes that one day he will no longer have to be a "boogieman."

Politics makes biased fools of us all

With tapes of voice recordings of Erdogan being leaked, whether they are authentic or not, what we believe today is what we want to believe.

A sham election will only divide Syria further

While the international community’s attention has been grabbed by Ukraine, it should not overlook the latest events in Syria as Bashar al-Assad’s presidential ‘election campaign’ begins. The July poll is likely to increase, rather than heal, the divide between Syrians of all types.

This week's window on the Middle East - March 20, 2014

Arab Awakening's columnists offer their weekly perspective on what is happening on the ground in the Middle East. Leading the week, The continuous battle against sexual harassment in Egypt.

Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression but conditions apply

Rayna Stamboliyska

Egypt has jailed journalists by the dozen; the Gulf is jailing people for tweets they send and surveillance companies are gearing them up. One does not need a crystal ball to see that repressive states in the MENA region will continue to suppress dissent.

Lebanese media retaliates against politicians' crackdown

A video of a talk show recently went viral in Lebanon in defence of freedom of expression. This should send a warning signal to media outlets across the country about what is taking place behind the scenes.

An excursion to Wadi Ara

I came away from this trip with a lot of food for thought. One thing for sure, the situation of the Israeli Arab community in Wadi Ara is much more complex than I had imagined.

The continuous battle against sexual harassment in Egypt

My hopes for a feminist uprising to lurch Egypt forward in a messy, imperfect, but ultimately positive way now seem part of a different time, before the great recalibration of possibilities, plans, and tactics brought about last summer.

In Nasser's shadow

Maged Mandour

Nasserism is based on two main pillars, Arab nationalism and Arab socialism. Both have been considered to be progressive, anti-imperialist ideologies aimed at ridding the Arab world of its backwardness. But the revival of the Nasserist legacy has been selective at best, aimed at reinforcing a “false consciousness”. 

Status quo in Bahrain

As the struggle in Bahrain continues, people in the west need to hold their governments accountable for their support of despotic regimes. 

This week's window on the Middle East - March 3, 2014

Arab Awakening's columnists offer their weekly perspective on what is happening on the ground in the Middle East. Leading the week, Four reasons for throwing down a gauntlet to El Sisi.

Four reasons for throwing down a gauntlet to El Sisi

With increasing workers strikes, gas shortages and daily power cuts in addition to a dwindling economy and tourism industry, Egypt’s presidential hopefuls, including Sisi, should be aware that using traditional tactics to solve Egypt’s problems is not going to work in his or anyone else’s favour.

Political violence and state repression in Egypt

Maged Mandour

The level of political violence and state repression is set to increase over the coming years in Egypt. The slogan, “Egypt is fighting terrorism” is only a short-term remedy, diverting attention away from a severe economic and political crisis.

Today's Egypt in a song: Emperor Rima's clothes

A new catchy tune is circulating social media in Egypt. A brief interview with the lyricist and musician confirms the author's suspicions of the symbolism of the song.

The Egyptian media’s non-campaigning campaign for Sisi

It seems obvious that Abdel Fattah El Sisi is going to be Egypt's next president, but he has yet to announce his intention to run. Are people just going to take it as a given that he is going to be the next president? Do they not want to know what his programme is?

This week's window on the Middle East - February 18, 2014

Arab Awakening's columnists offer their weekly perspective on what is happening on the ground in the Middle East. Leading the week, Photojournalism in the Palestinian Territories.

Sister revolution and its shadow twin, counter-revolution

From the start, the revolution was not supported by a significant part of the Egyptian society, a fact that does not seem to have sunk in with anyone except the old regime.

It’s always the woman’s fault

In the day-to-day lives of women in Sudan, it's easy for a man to rape a women and get away with it. However, a woman has to know the right people if she hopes to get anywhere close to justice.

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