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Modernism in the Middle East and Arab World

Exploring modernity and its intellectual trends in the Middle East is a very fitting endeavour, as ‘Middle East’ itself is a ‘modern’ term which has…

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Photography

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Beydoun, Abbas (Bayḏūn, ʿAbbās) (1945--)

Abbas Beydoun is one of Lebanon’s most famous poets and writers, and one of the most outstanding and important intellectuals in the Arab world. He…

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Husseini, Jumana (1932--)

Jumana Husseini was born in 1932 in Jerusalem. Her family was forced to leave Palestine during the 1948 war, re-settling in Lebanon where she met…

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Modern Belly Dance

References to dances of the East have appeared in Western sources at least since the beginning of the Christian era, yet what has become known…

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Corm, Georges Daoud (1896–1971)

George Daoud Corm was a painter and francophone poet dedicated to Christian ethics and the classical tradition of European Humanism. He attended the Ecole Nationale…

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al-Khāl, Yūsuf (1917–1987)

Yūsuf al-Khāl was a Lebanese poet and writer, born in 1917 in Syria. He graduated in 1944 from the Philosophy Department at the American University…

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Mussolini, Benito (1883–1945)

Known as Il Duce (the Leader), the son of a Marxist blacksmith, Benito Mussolini was the ruler of Fascist Italy (1922–43). A master of populist…

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Guiragossian, Paul (1925–1993)

Born in Jerusalem to Armenian parents who survived the 1915 Armenian Genocide, Guiragossian eventually settled in Beirut after being evacuated from Palestine by the British.…

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Gemayel, Cesar (1898–1958)

Cesar Gemayel marked a transition in Lebanese art from the commissioned, academic portraits of his predecessors towards the portrayal of landscapes, nudes, and still lifes…

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Spaces for Modern Art in North Africa

In the twenty-first century, works of modern art appear in national museums, private museums, galleries, and independent exhibit spaces across North Africa (defined here as…

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Zaydān, Jurjī (جرجي زيدان) (1861–1914)

Jurjī Zaydān was a Lebanese novelist, journalist, and scholar of the Nahḍa (‘awakening’), an intellectual current of the long nineteenth century for the renewal of…

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al-Shidyāq, Aḥmad Fāris (c.1805–1887)

Aḥmad Fāris al-Shidyāq was a Lebanese writer and journalist and one of the most provocative figures of the Nahḍa (‘awakening’), an intellectual current in the…

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The Egyptian School of Fine Arts

The Egyptian School of Fine Arts [Madrassat al-Funun al-Jamila al-Misriyya] opened its doors on 13 May 1908, a date cited by many art historians as…

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Al-Adab (1953–2013)

The literary journal al-Adab was established in Beirut in 1953. This avant-garde journal was open to all forms of literary experimentation and to all views…

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Oz, Amos (1939– )

The Hebrew author Amos Oz (born Amos Klausner)—an essayist, professor of literature at Ben Gurion University of the Negev, and active contributor to Israeli and…

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Schneemann, Carolee (1939–)

Carolee Schneemann is an American artist (born in Pennsylvania, United States) whose work interrogates vision as embodied experience. She has produced films made to be…

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al-Ḥājj, Unsī (1937–2014)

Unsī al-Ḥājj (1937–2014) was a Lebanese poet largely recognized as the pioneer of Arabic prose poems (qaṣīdat al-nathr) thanks to his renowned but controversial first…

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Masābnī, Badī’ah

Badī’ah Masābnī was a professional actress, singer, and dancer from the Levant. She settled in Egypt in the 1920s and eventually opened a highly successful…

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Ziadeh, May (1886–1941)

May Ziadeh was a prominent literary figure and salonnière in the Arab world in the late nineteenth century and early twentieth century. A journalist, essayist,…

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Al-Bayati, Abdul-Wahab (1926–99)

Iraqi poet Abdul-Wahab al-Bayati was one of the foremost pioneers of Arabic poetry during the twentieth century. His poetry was revolutionary in poetic form and…

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Yousef, Saadi (1934–)

Saadi Yousef is an Iraqi poet, author, journalist, and political activist. He has published 45 volumes of poetry, nine books of prose, several essays and…