who does language belong to? who owns the rights to a particular tongue, dialect, or vernacular? can you gate-keep language? for my dissertation on palestinian hip-hop in israel and the diaspora, i've had to do some research on AAVE: african american vernacular english, the dialect spoken among many african americans within their communities, and the … Continue reading oc6
there are people you meet who you know are on solid ground. you can see it in their posture, in the calm of their shoulders, the ease of their expression. they're not worried about tomorrow, or afraid of leaving; they have somewhere to go, something to lean on. some of us are born on mountains, … Continue reading ol7
a lot of people seem to think that honoring a relationship means upholding the principles of monogamy, and in the event you make a mistake, slip up, cheat, it is your moral duty to inform your partner, and absolve yourself (given of course that it was just a one-time thing). but what about those couples … Continue reading oc5
we were never together, but we had each other, the way one has a tattoo; under the skin, painful at the outset, painful to remove, but satisfying, cool, complementary, could be permanent. all of a sudden he was always around, his boxers were in my apartment, he was asking me about lunch, inviting people over, calling me nicknames. then he was gone before he'd left.
because we can never know the essence of things, but cannot help but sense them, we must take however imprecise a stab at them, create something pseudo-reflective of the unnamable, and put it out there, to see if anyone recognizes it. on the level of personal expression, that is art, on the level of the collective, nationhood.
there are two ways to lose people: by hurting them, or by being hurt.
the post-blast period has been a weird one for every lebanese person, even the diaspora ones with a less-than-mild attachment to the motherland. for the first few weeks after it happened, i had friends texting and calling me from all over the world, people i haven't spoken to months or years, some people i haven't … Continue reading oc3
the 'l' in 'ol4' stands for lebanon today. imagine you and your siblings inherit a house. a biig, beautiful, ancient house, five stories high, made of stone and rounded with balconies, with a red brick roof and garden all around. you and your siblings move in with your families and all your things. you live … Continue reading ol4
today i want to address something that continues to weigh heavily on my mind: the inherent problem of history, which is the very way it’s been told. it has risen like an endless wave, starting from something small—a phoenician ship that washes up on a roman shore. a group of seamen know a carthaginian sail, … Continue reading oc2
because 'art' can be a reductive notion, i've decided to start a new 'thread' (if you will) on culture in general. the word 'culture' suggests a myriad of things--it could range from having heavily religious implications to referring to the creative or industrial production of a society. even within the productive sector, different subcultures emerge: … Continue reading oc1