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February 24 2013

"History and Identity in the Late Antique Near East", edited by Philip Wood

Egypte actus's curator insight, Today, 8:23 AM


History and Identity in the Late Antique Near East gathers together the work of distinguished historians and early career scholars with a broad range of expertise to investigate the significance of newly emerged, or recently resurrected, ethnic identities on the borders of the eastern Mediterranean world. It focuses on the "long late antiquity" from the eve of the Arab conquest of the Roman East to the formation of the Abbasid caliphate. The first half of the book offers papers on the Christian Orient on the cusp of the Islamic invasions. These papers discuss how Christians negotiated the end of Roman power, whether in the selective use of the patristic past to create confessional divisions or the emphasis of the shared philosophical legacy of the Greco-Roman world. The second half of the book considers Muslim attempts to negotiate the pasts of the conquered lands of the Near East, where the Christian histories of Hira or Egypt were used to create distinctive regional identities for Arab settlers. Like the first half, this section investigates the redeployment of a shared history, this time the historical imagination of the Qu'ran and the era of the first caliphs. All the papers in the volume bring together studies of the invention of the past across traditional divides between disciplines, placing the re-assessment of the past as a central feature of the long late antiquity. As a whole, History and Identity in the Late Antique Near East represents a distinctive contribution to recent writing on late antiquity, due to its cultural breadth, its interdisciplinary focus, and its novel definition of late antiquity itself.

Oxford University Press, USA, April 1, 2013, 272 pages





Contents via ;


Sophronius of Jerusalem and the end of roman history / Phil Booth -- Identity, philosophy, and the problem of Armenian history in the sixth century / Tara Andrews -- The chronicle of Seert and Roman ecclesiastical history in the Sasanian world / Philip Wood -- Why were the Syrians interested in Greek philosophy? / Dan King -- You are what you read: Qenneshre and the Miaphysite church in the seventh century / Jack Tannous -- The prophet's city before the prophet: Ibn Zabala (d. after 199/814) on pre-Islamic Medina / Harry Munt -- Topoi and topography in the histories of al-?ira / Adam Talib -- "The crinkly haired people of the black earth"; examining Egyptian identities in Ibn 'abd al-?akam's futu? / Hussein Omar -- Forgetting Ctesiphon: Iran's pre-Islamic past, ca. 800-1100 / Sarah Savant -- Legal knowledge and local practices under the early Abbasids / Mathiew Tillier.


Reposted byiranelection iranelection

March 29 2012

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February 27 2012


February 16 2012

Pendu pour un message sur Twitter ? Appel pour la libération de Hamza Kashgari

Hamza Kashgari, jeune journaliste saoudien, a refusé de s'incliner devant le prophète Mahomet le jour anniversaire de sa naissance. Le problème, c'est qu'il l'a fait savoir sur Twitter et risque désormais la pendaison. Le philosophe Daniel Salvatore Schiffer s'en indigne dans cet appel.


// oAnth -  source URL --

February 10 2012

Umm Kulthum [early 60ies ?] - أم كلثوم ــ أمل حياتي ــ كاملة / بحضور جمال عبد الناصر كوكب الشرق سيدة الغناء العربي أم كلثوم / أمل حياتي / بحضور جمال عبد الناصر أمل حياتي يا حب غالي ما ينتهيش يا أحلى غنوه س...


// oAnth


yt-permalink --

(cf. also )

February 07 2012

February 01 2012

Where In The Tunnel Are We? – By Ehsani | Syria comment - 2012-01-31

Why is the Syrian opposition so divided? Here are some of the main divisions running through Syrian society:

Sunni versus Alawi
Poor versus rich
Rural versus urban
Homs and Hama versus Aleppo and Damascus
Baathists versus Non-Baathists
Religious versus Secular
Saudi Arabia versus Iran
USA versus Russia

Welcome to the cocktail of the new Syrian revolution.

I returned home to Syria two weeks ago. Many of my friends were surprised that I would make the long trip at this time of gathering war.

For two weeks, I traveled (flew) between Aleppo and Damascus. I talked to rich and poor: bankers, taxi drivers, young protestors from Idlib, rank and file army soldiers stationed in Homs, senior Alawi officers, Christian and tribal Sunni families. I did my best to get a comprehensive view of what people were thinking and how they saw the future.

In what follows, I will present a raw interview-type account of three different encounters that I had. Two were with Taxi drivers. One with a soldier. Even though I had my own car and someone to drive me around, I preferred the taxis to get a better feel.


read more via link in the title line
Reposted from02mysoup-aa 02mysoup-aa

January 04 2012

Arab World: A Year In Pictures - Our Authors' Selection

Since Mohamed Bouazizi, a young Tunisian fruit vendor set himself on fire in the small city of Sidi Bouzid on December 2010, a wave of unprecedented popular protests is sweeping the Arab world. The region has seen unprecedented events that no one could ever imagine witnessing in a lifetime.

Three Arab dictators have been toppled, some others forced to engage in reforms, while in other places the confrontation is proving to be painful and bloody.

In any case, 2011 is likely to remain engraved in the history of the Arab world as the year when people started raising against their oppressive regimes.

As we bid farewell to 2011 and look ahead to 2012, we asked our authors to share with you pictures that in their eyes have marked the past year in their respective countries. The following selection represents their choices.


Photo by Talel Nacer, used with permission

On January, 14, 2011 thousands of protesters gathered near the Interior Ministry building in Tunis calling for the fall of the regime of dictator Zeine El Abidine Ben Ali. Later on the same day, Ben Ali fled to Saudi Arabia.

Afef Abroughi


Author unkown

A powerful message from “the occupied city of Kafar Nabel”, Syria.

Leila Nachawati


Photo by KrikOrion, used with permission

Even though Lebanon has not witnessed a revolution in 2011, the Land of the Cedars was highly affected by the developpements and turmoil in the area. But for Lebanese it's the high cost of living that is haunting them the most. Following each wage increase by the government and even before the plan is approved by parliament, prices soar tremendously.

Thalia Rahme


Photo by Jillian C. York, used under a CC license (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Palestine: “Marching United Towards Freedom”

Jillian C. York


Copyright Shohdi Al-Sofi, used with permission

The peaceful massive marches of Yemen which never stopped throughout the year are a testimony of Yemenis' steadfast and resilience and prove ultimately, like the billboard reads, that “victory is to the people”.

Noon Arabia


Picture posted on Twitter by @almakna

The above photograph, shared by @almakna on Twitter, shows the number of areas reportedly tear gassed by the Bahrain authorities in one night. On that particular day, I myself choked on the tear gas, spending the night and the following day sick and closely followed tweets and complaints by Twitter users from across the country.

Amira Al Hussaini

Picture posted on Twitter by @SanabisVoice

This photograph, from the Sanabis Voice, shows empty teargas canisters, collected from a small area, in one day. Such photographs are found in abundance online, shared by netizens on social networking sites, and tell a story that has been recurring for 11 months - a story not much of the world cares about.

Amira Al Hussaini


Picture by rouelshimi, used under CC license (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

January 25, the first wave of protesters go to Tahrir square. It's the dawn of the revolution.

Tarek Amr


Copyright Amine Hachimoto. Used with permission.

The little girl looking up at this Moroccan Superman pausing in front of the parliament seems to be wondering if he can fly. Maybe he's an ultra-nationalist trying to make a point? Or maybe he's a supporter of the pro-reforms group February 20? It doesn't really matter. Because behind this amazing photo by Amine Hachimoto lies a new reality in Morocco: 2011 is the year when the street has become the theater of nonviolent political expression. Something that is likely to continue in the years to come.

Hisham Almiraat

January 03 2012

November 20 2011

Al-Jazeera : du « printemps arabe » à l'hiver de l'information

Al-Jazeera fête en ce moment son quinzième anniversaire avec des slogans – « L'information, l'opinion, la conscience… » – qui ne craignent pas de verser dans l'auto-célébration ! Plus que jamais, la création des autorités du Qatar semble avoir le vent en poupe. Copie conforme, ou traduction fidèle si l'on préfère, d'une offre internationale elle-même produite sur le modèle nord-américain, personne n'ignore que la première des chaînes d'information du monde arabe n'aurait pu exister et se développer de la sorte sans l'aide généreuse des finances de l'Émirat.
Reposted fromcheg00 cheg00

November 18 2011

Sous les révoltes arabes

La plupart des commentateurs occidentaux, dont la vision est déformée par l'idéologie du « choc des civilisations » et l'islamophobie ambiante, ont perçu les révoltes arabes comme des « miracles » incompréhensibles. Une multitude d'observateurs décrivent pourtant depuis plusieurs années les transformations profondes qui bouleversent les sociétés arabes et témoignent de leur vitalité, en dépit de la chape de plomb imposée par des États autoritaires. Ces analyses peuvent-elles nous aider à comprendre les événements de l'année 2011 ? C'est la question à laquelle cet article s'efforce de répondre, en s'attachant au cas égyptien, à travers la lecture de Life as Politics d'Asef Bayat.
Reposted fromcheg00 cheg00

November 17 2011

The contradictions of the Arab Spring by Immanuel Wallerstein

The turmoil in Arab countries that is called the Arab Spring is conventionally said to have been sparked by the self-immolation of Mohamed Bouazizi in a small village of Tunisia on December 17, 2010.

Reposted from02mysoup-aa 02mysoup-aa

November 02 2011


To some extent, the intellectual silence of the current uprising is a deliberate response to the hollow revolutionary rhetoric of previous generations. The Arab nationalist movement began in the 1930s and ’40s with idealistic young men who hoped to lead the region out of its colonial past, backwardness and tribalism. The Syrian political philosopher Michel Aflaq and other young writers and activists found inspiration in 19th-century German theories of nationalism, and envisioned their Baath Party as an instrument for modernization and economic justice.

Irtiqa: Is there a role for intellectuals in the Arab Spring? | by Salman Hameed -  - 2011-11-01

Middle East Progress » Blog Archive » The Arab Intellectuals Who ...

We are, to the contrary, determined more than ever to proceed to realize the common objective, which we all share, of a Middle East that is at peace with security and prosperity for the people of Israel, for Palestinians, and for ...

Source:, via Google Blogs search for Middle East
Reposted from02mysoup-aa 02mysoup-aa

October 24 2011

Egypt: Catch the Former Regime Remnants

This post is part of our special coverage of Egypt Protests 2011.

Last April, an Egyptian court ordered the dissolution of the political organization that had ruled the nation for decades, the National Democratic Party (NDP). At the time, the verdict was considered by many, including the Egyptian blogger, Zeinobia, as one of the achievements of the revolution, and a punishment for those who contaminated the political life in Egypt during Mubarak's era.

She wrote:

This long waited verdict is the best slap on the arrogance of the NDP members “former members to be accurate” who do not want to give up and admit the crimes they have committed against this great nation.

Since then the word “Felool” [ar], which translates to the “remnants of the former regime”, has become the newest addition to the daily vocabulary of Egyptians. Mohammad Salah described the meaning of the word in more detail:

Between seriousness and comedy, the word “remnants” has become the most frequently used word within Egyptian circles after the Revolution. The remnants are the defeated, or the leftovers of the former regime: whether those who worked within the executive apparatus and assumed high-ranking government positions; prominent figures of the dissolved National Democratic Party (NDP); MPs in the People’s Assembly and Shura Council who would gain their seats through fraud; or people affiliated with the Mubarak regime even if they did not work in the government or engaged in politics directly – such as businessmen, celebrities, artists, football players and people the regime would use to promote itself or to justify certain behavior, allow certain decisions to pass and promote the issue of Mubarak’s son inheriting the presidency!

And while the Egyptians are getting themselves ready for the parliamentary elections in November, the remnants of Mubarak regime became a serious issue to many of them. Some former members of the NDP launched new political parties, and some others will run independently. Even when it comes to other established parties, some of them decided to rely on the popularity of some ex-NDP members to gain more seats in parliament.

Azza Sedky wrote how Al-Wafd - one of the oldest Egyptian parties - is accused of integrating ex-members of the National Democratic Party into its lists.

She explained:

However, even the Wafd seems to be having issues with its lists, as certain members insist on running in the parliamentary polls, while the party's high commission thinks otherwise. Mostafa El-Gendy, who recently resigned from the party, was among those who censured the Wafd for allegedly integrating ex-members of ousted president Hosni Mubarak's National Democratic Party (NDP) into its lists.

Also Ramy Mahrous tweeted:

@RamyMahrous: Ayman @ayman_shweky claims some Parliament candidates belong to “Alwast” Party are ex-NDP #Matrouh #Egypt #Parliament #Elections

Issues like this resulted in many arguments either within the parties or between different parties within political blocs, and Bassem Sabry reported one of those example in his blog:

Reasons for the split include ex-NDP members running with the Egyptian Bloc, and also (of course) the allocation of seats within the Bloc.

A list of ndp spin-off parties, tweeted by maram adel

One of the proposed solutions was a law that bans members of the former Egyptian ruling National Democratic Party (NDP) from running in the upcoming parliamentary elections. However, this caused much controversy as some political forces view it as necessary for a real democracy in Egypt, while others have criticized it for setting a precedent of political isolation.

Such a law is still being studied by the Higher Council for the Armed Forces (SCAF), and it is hard to wait for it with the elections around the corner, so some revolutionary youth came out with another solution. They created a new platform under the name Emsek-flol (Catch the former regime remnants) to list all those former NDP members and the electoral districts they are going to run in. Zeinobia blogged about the website here:

Just like Catch a thief Egyptian political groups and activists including April 6th Youth , Revolution Youth coalition and The Egyptian National Council “Mamdouh Hamza” have launched a great website that called :
This fantastic website includes all the names of ex-NDP leaders and important members as well former NDP members of the parliament , local councils and NDP’s headquarters in all our governorates. It is huge fantastic work. You can find names based on governorates with brief details about their positions in the NDP.
The most interesting section is the cadres of the NDP , its leaders. That list includes very powerful businessmen who are untouched up till now. The website includes the names of the parties made by the NDP remnants, of course they are more than 8 now.

This post is part of our special coverage of Egypt Protests 2011.

October 23 2011

Egypt: Watching the Tunisian Elections

This post is part of our special coverage for both the Egypt Revolution 2011 and Tunisian Revolution 2011.

The Tunisian revolution preceded the Egyptian one and since then, the Tunisians pursuit of democracy has been inspiring to the Egyptians. And now the Tunisians - inside and outside Tunisia - are busy with electing members of an assembly that will appoint a new government and then write a new constitution.

The polling station in the Tunisian embassy in Cairo. Photo taken by Nessryne Jelalia

Those outside Tunisia, including those living in Egypt, started the voting process three days earlier than those inside Tunisia.

@SoniaElSakka: 20, 21,22 Oct Tunisian living abroad will vote around the world. 3 days of pride a dream we never believed could happen ta7ya [long live] Tunis #TNelec

Nessryne, a Tunisian living in Cairo, tweeted her feelings after voting for the first time in her life.

@nessryne: Such an emotional moment!! Cairo voting office is really cool and people are friendly but strict. #Egypt #TneElec

@nessryne: I need to calm down! I have to work today! Completely euphoric and HAPPY!!! #TneElec

Sonia El Sakka, another Tunisian in Egypt, wrote in her blog:

I voted ya Tunis :)
I did it … I finally voted … For the first time in my life what an amazing feeling of pride of happiness and of great hope for you my beautiful country … Praying for you to find the right path, Praying for my amazing Tunisian family, brothers and sisters to find our long awaited country the way we want it to be.
I am very optimistic very happy and no matter what many people think.

I Love You Tunisia the country of my birth, the country of my first smile, first word, first VOTE :)

Meanwhile, the Egyptians are watching the elections and expressing their happiness with it.

@esr_slam: مبروك تونس والله ساعدتي بيكم اليوم كأني كنت بصوت معاكم اليوم
@esr_slam: Congratulations to Tunisia, I swear I'm happy today as happy as if I am voting myself.
@AhmdAlish: في طريقي لسفارة تونس بالقاهرة لتهنئة المصوتين بالانتخابات
@AhmdAlish: On my way to the Tunisian Embassy in Cairo to congratulate the Tunisians voting there.

In both countries the opinion of each people about the other over the past 30 years was mostly based on their football rivalry. It is interesting to see how some Egyptians see Tunisia now, how some others used to have a different opinion earlier, and how visiting each others country has became an inspiring experience.

@btnafas7oria: لسه واخده بالى ان العلم الوحيد الى فى بيتى هو علم تونس …بكل حزم
@btnafas7oria: Just realized now that the only flag in my home is the Tunisian one … with all pride.
@kameldinho81: أنا كنت لا أحب تونس و لكن الآن تونس و مصر أيد واحدهة
@kameldinho81: I used to not like Tunisia, but now Tunisia and Egypt are both hand in hand.
@gogaegypt: يا تونس باعمل كل جهدي علشان اجيلك انا وبناتي في العيد
@gogaegypt: Oh Tunisia, I am doing my best to visit you with my daughters during Eid.

Being two of the older children of the so-called Arab Spring, many Egyptians have also started comparing how their post-revolution process is going to that in Tunisia.

@AmrKhairi: نجاح تونس التام في الانتقال لنظام محترم سيكون أكبر محفز للثورة في مصر، عشان الناس تفوق وتصحى م النوم
@AmrKhairi: The success of Tunisia in moving to a respected political system will be a catalyst for the Egyptian revolution, and for people to wake up.
@mohamedzezo92: فارق شاسع بين مسار الثورة في تونس ومسارها في مصر شئ مؤسف
@mohamedzezo92: There is a huge difference between the path the revolution in Tunisia is taking and that it's taking here in Egypt. It's a shame.

@mohamedzezo92: كنت أتمني أن مصر تبقي زي تونس وندعو لانتخاب جمعية تأسيسة لسن دستور جديد بس ع كل الأحوال تحية لأهل تونس

@mohamedzezo92: I wish we had an assembly here in Egypt to write a new constitution like in Tunisia, but anyhow I salute the Tunisian people.
@Abu_gamal: تونس بتنتخب … ربنا يسامح اللي قالوا نعم في الاستفتاء
@Abu_gamal: Tunisia is voting … May God forgive those who voted with yes in the referendum.

@MahmoudAboBakr: الناس اللى بتقول تونس احسن مننا والثورة هناك سبقت ثورة مصر، طيب وهو فيه كتاب او كتالوج بيحدد مراحل الثورة وشكلها

@MahmoudAboBakr: Those who are saying the situation in Tunisia is better than us, and that their revolution proceeded ours, do you have a handbook or a catalogue that defines a revolution and its stages?

Also it's a good chance to learn from the elections there, with the Egyptian elections around the corner.

@TravellerW: Are #Egypt-ians following the #Tunisia elections closely enough? From campaigning ideas to negative advertising, we must WATCH AND LEARN!!

And finally, despite the fact that they are both Arab-speaking countries, the language barrier sometimes stand in the way of those who want to follow the details of the events in Tunisia.

@EmanM: مش ممكن يا توانسة! اكتبوا بالعربي شوية وسيبكوا من الفرنساوي دة عشان نفهمكم، دة احنا حتى عرب زي بعض
@EmanM: I can't believe it Tunisians! Please write more in Arabic and stop using French for us to be able to understand you. We are both Arabs.

This post is part of our special coverage for both the Egypt Revolution 2011 and Tunisian Revolution 2011.

Echec relatif des Frères musulmans aux élections du syndicat des médecins égyptiens

Les élections au syndicat professionnel des médecins se sont déroulées dans toute l'Egypte. C'était le premier scrutin depuis la révolution et depuis celui de 1992 – le dernier –, qui avait vu les Frères Musulmans l'emporter, mais avec un taux de participation très faible. Depuis 1992, le pouvoir avait gelé la situation et aucune élection n'avait pu se dérouler. Au mois d'octobre, les médecins ont donc été appelés à voter à la fois pour la direction nationale et pour les 26 directions régionales. Et les (...) - Nouvelles d'Orient / Égypte, Syndicalisme, Frères musulmans

October 05 2011

Play fullscreen
Egyptian Workers Denounce Military Regime

Jihan Hafiz: Egyptian workers say military trying to reconstitute old regime without Mubarak

Reposted byiranelection iranelection

September 22 2011

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