Identity and social change, women’s rights movements, US diplomat in henna

  • Qusay ponders the questions of identity and social change: “I am a product of that change, along with many others, just take a look at the Saudi’s writing in English. English is almost our first language, we grew up watching American shows and we dressed like the cool people we saw on TV. When we went out we ate fast food, and listened to American music, and watched Hollywood movies (not in theatres of course).” I wonder if I’m one the bloggers he is talking about. I don’t think that I’m one of them. I think my view of our society has more to do with our past, which I believe was better, than with what Western media sell as their lifestyle vs ours.
  • The Philosophy Cube writes about the women’s rights movement in Saudi Arabia. Or rather the lack thereof. I think many of us agree that the economic factor is one of the strongest catalysts for change. “In light of all the social intricacies within the society, I am sure that it is poverty alone and the struggles of the lower classes that will bring Women’s Rights to the country.”
  • Today’s picture:

    Cynthia Cook tries henna

    Cynthia Cook sits down to have her hands adorned with henna in a local summer festival here in Hofuf, east of Saudi Arabia. Cook is the Public Affairs Officer at the US Consulate in Dhahran, and she was part of an American delegation that visited the festival earlier this week. You know, public diplomacy and stuff :P

Today’s Links

  • CITC has blocked islamlight.net, the website which hosted the infamous fatwa by Shaikh Abdul-Rahman al-Barrak. Although the fatwa can be considered hate speech and a call to violence, I’m generally against such censorship. CITC should stop this practice of making decisions on our behalf on what we should, or rather should not, read on the web.
  • Corinne Martin is an artist who lives in Saudi Arabia and makes these awesome paintings based on vintage pop culture icons.
  • Music concerts are rare in this country. Music concerts in universities are super rare. But hey, what do you know? Jeddah Legends, the band of which Qusay is the lead singer, have recently performed a concert in KAUST. Why oh why KSU never hosted any concerts?