Source: Center for Middle Eastern Studies, Harvard University
The Internet has redefined fashion just as it has communication and business. In the last ten years, the fashion community has morphed from a seemingly exclusive world of magazine editors and established designers to a greater global community accessible to more people, especially anyone with a computer and an appreciation of style. The Internet has also given rise to a distinct cultural movement: street style.
Bill Cunningham of the New York Times has chronicled street style for years. The Internet has expanded street style from a “Sunday Styles” feature to a thriving celebration of individuality and personal taste. Almost every fashion magazine features a street style section on its website, and countless street style blogs are read on a daily basis. Street style translates trends from figments of the runways into real life, identifying trends as they are actually worn. Street style also sparks mutual appreciation for an outfit regardless of the country or culture of origin.
Morocco and the city of Casablanca is rapidly emerging as an up-and-coming city in the fashion world. Significant economic liberalization in conjunction with increased work opportunity for women has directly influenced the growth of fashion in Morocco. Established European chains such as Zara and Sandro have expanded to Morocco, and Elite Model Management, one of the world’s top agencies, has recently opened an office in Casablanca.
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Syria’s government has agreed to accept the peace plan put forward by the United Nations and Arab League envoy, Kofi Annan, his spokesman has said.
Annan’s six-point peace plan
1. Syrian-led political process to address the aspirations and concerns of the Syrian people
2. UN-supervised cessation of armed violence in all its forms by all parties to protect civilians
3. All parties to ensure provision of humanitarian assistance to all areas affected by the fighting, and implement a daily two-hour humanitarian pause
4. Authorities to intensify the pace and scale of release of arbitrarily detained persons
5. Authorities to ensure freedom of movement throughout the country for journalists
6. Authorities to respect freedom of association and the right to demonstrate peacefully
In other developments:
- Clashes between Syrian security forces and armed rebels have spilled across the border with Lebanon, witnesses and Lebanese security officials say
- Syria’s opposition groups are meeting in Istanbul to try to achieve a more united front
- President Assad has visited former rebel stronghold Baba Amr in Homs
- Yakin Erturk has resigned from a UN panel investigating human rights abuses, citing lack of access to Syria
- Turkish Airlines is stopping flights to Syria after Turkey’s closure of its embassy in Damascus.
Researcher, writer: Richard Peres: Feb. 28
The author of The Day Turkey Stood Still: Merve Kavakci’s Walk into the Turkish Parliament
process isn’t over
11 March 2012 / YONCA POYRAZ DOĞAN , İSTANBUL
What are the facts surrounding the affair of Merve Kavakçı, who was kicked out of Parliament due to her headscarf in 1999 following the “post-modern coup” of Feb. 28, 1997?
The answer to this question and more comes in a book written by Richard Peres, who is an American researcher and writer. In the book, “The Day Turkey Stood Still: Merve Kavakci’s Walk into the Turkish Parliament” he notes that Turkey’s National Security Council (MGK), beginning on Feb. 28, defined Islamic movements as internal enemies.
Kavakçı was elected a deputy for the Virtue Party (FP) in the 1999 elections, but she was no ordinary lawmaker as she wore the headscarf, considered a violation of the principle of secularism in politics. Long before the oath ceremony, discussions in the media heated up as to whether Kavakçı would come to Parliament wearing a headscarf. Kavakçı, indeed, appeared in a headscarf to take the oath in Parliament on May 2, 1999. She was not only dismissed from Parliament, but was also stripped of her citizenship in 2001.
The Nabati Poetry of the UAE: a remarkable anthology
[The Nabati Poetry of the United Arab Emirates
Selected Poems, Annotated and Translated into English, with accompanying Audio CD
Ithaca Press, Editors: Said Salman Abu Athera , Clive Holes, 9780863723780, 235 x 155mm Binding:, Hardback Publication, April 2011, £30.00,
Poetry plays an important role in the daily reality of the Arab world. Far from being a thing of the past, it has extended its sway through television and the internet to reach audiences of millions. Mixed with traditional themes such as lovers’ complaints, poetry gives voice to current social and political concerns, and charts striking shifts in people’s sensibilities. It is an artist’s blog for critique and satire, as well as for the affirmation of society’s values.
For outsiders, language can be a barrier, but that obstacle has now been removed by Clive Holes and Said Salman Abu Athera in their anthology of Emirati verse with English translations. Its variety, based on judicious choice, allows us to get to know the UAE through its most authentic voices and, at the same time, the art of Arab poetry in the Gulf in its current guise.
As in the title, the word “nabati” is used to denote the poetry circulating among the population of the Arabian peninsula in general, unlike the poetry written according to the rules of literary Arabic, for which the Quran is the supreme example. According to some, nabati may stem from the ancient Nabataeans who lived in Petra and other parts of north-western Arabia. It is commonly translated as “vernacular, popular”, but this may suggest that this type of poetry is the domain of uneducated, “backwards” segments of society, waiting to be eradicated by general progress towards modern standard Arabic. While purists may see it that way, the facts are otherwise.