the blogs & reblogs of an islamist-feminist

twitter: @ralhayek
Student of Islam ,the Near East, & Women's Studies. lover of (classic) English & Arabic Literature. Art. Reader. Writer. Avid Tea Drinker, Notebook & Pen collector.


Through the Clouds, Night

“I tried to put the displacement between parenthesis, to put a last period in a long sentence of the sadness of history, personal and public history. But I see nothing except commas. I want to sew the times together. I want to attach one moment to another, to attach childhood to age, to attach the present to the absent and all the presents to all absences, to attach exiles to the homeland and to attach what I have imagined to what I see now”

—   Mourid Barghouti, I Saw Ramallah. (via nowinexile)

theparisreview:

But time spent reading is never time wasted. Nor, for that matter, is time spent sitting by oneself, writing about a party you will never have.”

Sadie Stein on dinner-party surveys as conversation starters

everythingspeachykeenandroses:

Decided to turn my artwork into a political message.

everythingspeachykeenandroses:

Decided to turn my artwork into a political message.

(via thefeministpress)

Thank You For Last Wednesday

thesunmagazine:

On marriage and its discontents

An essay by C.J. Gall. 

Keeping track of time, doing this kind of personal accounting, gives things context; it marks the passing of time not unlike the demarcation school enforced, where time was punctuated by semesters and summer breaks. When you mark time in chunks, you can name it — “it’s fall,” “I’m in my 40s,” we’re in the “aughts.” Shared vocabulary has value because then there can be conversation. Being aware of time allows for both an objectivity and a shared experience that weren’t there before.

What you actively spend time on, and (far more difficult) what you choose not to do, who you choose not to spend time with, and who and what you decide to say no to — what you choose, then — is how you mark time. And that is all there is.

—   

A beautiful reflection on time by Liz Danzico. Pair with this fascinating look at how humanity has visualized the chunking of time over the ages

Annie Dillard captured this yin-yang of time best: “How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.”

(via explore-blog)

"What you actively spend time on, and (far more difficult) what you choose not to do, who you choose not to spend time with, and who and what you decide to say no to — what you choose, then — is how you mark time. And that is all there is.”

thenewwomensmovement:

tyciblog:

Happy birthday, bell hooks!

It’s a few days past her birthday now, but bell hooks always deserves our recognition and celebration.

thenewwomensmovement:

tyciblog:

Happy birthday, bell hooks!

It’s a few days past her birthday now, but bell hooks always deserves our recognition and celebration.

In response to my request under the Freedom of Information Act, filed on behalf of CounterPunch, the FBI recently released 147 of Said’s 238-page FBI file. There are some unusual gaps in the released records, and it is possible that the FBI still holds far more files on Professor Said than they acknowledge. Some of these gaps may exist because new Patriot Act and National Security exemptions allow the FBI to deny the existence of records; however, the released file provides enough information to examine the FBI’s interest in Edward Said who mixed artistic appreciations, social theory, and political activism in powerful and unique ways.

The FBI’s first record of Edward Said appears in a February 1971 domestic security investigation of another unidentified individual. The FBI collected photographs of Said from the State Department’s passport division and various news agencies. Said’s “International Security” FBI file was established when an informant gave the FBI a program from the October 1971 Boston Convention of the Arab-American University Graduates, where Said chaired a panel on “Culture and the Critical Spirit”. Most of Said’s FBI records were classified under the administrative heading of “Foreign Counterintelligence,” category 105, and most records are designated as relating to “IS ­ Middle East,” the Bureau’s designation for Israel.

In February 1972, New York FBI agents produced a report listing Said’s employment at Columbia University, his home address and phone number, including a notation that his home telephone service was provided by New York Telephone Company ­ information that was later used to request listings of all toll calls charged to Said’s home phone number. A July 1972 FBI report indicates Said received a phone call from someone who was the subject of intensive FBI surveillance. The NYC agent wrote that “reasons for phone call, activities of the professor, and his sympathies in relation to [blank in the document] matters have not been ascertained”.

In the months after the attacks at the 1972 Munich Olympics there was a flurry of FBI interest in Said and other Palestinian Americans. In early October 1972, the NY FBI office investigated Said’s background and citizenship information as well as voting, banking and credit records. Employees at Princeton and Columbia Universities gave FBI agents biographical and education information on Said, and the Harvard University Alumni Office provided the FBI with detailed information. As Middle East scholar Steve Niva observes, “looking back, this post-Munich period may have marked an historic turning point when statements in support of the Palestinian cause became routinely equated with sympathies for terrorism.”

The FBI spoke with their “Middle East informants” in Boston, Newark and New York to gather information on Said. One report indicated that “several confidential sources who are familiar with Middle East [blank in the document]in the United States were contacted during 1972 and 1973, but were unable to furnish any information pertaining to Edward William Said.” During this investigation, FBI agents located and read a 1970 Boston Globe article headlined “Columbia Professor Blames Racist Attitude for Arab-Israeli Conflict”.

In January 1973, the FBI undertook further criminal and biographical background checks on Said, and the New York Special Agent in Charge recommended in February that the case be closed. But an FBI investigation the next month of a “subject [who had] traveled in the United States in 1971” began a new investigation of Said as one of several individuals whose phone numbers had come to the attention of the FBI and were believed to have possible “connections with Arab terrorist activities.” Such alleged connections remain unspecified as do Said’s connections to such activities, but such vague associations are frequently used to keep investigations active.

During the aftermath of the Yom Kippur War the FBI collected several of Said’s newspaper columns and interviews, and his file includes a New York Times column arguing that Arabs and Jews in the Middle East had historically been pitted against each other rather than against “imperialist powers”. In 1974, the FBI received word that Said would speak at the Canadian Arab Federation Conference in Windsor, Ontario, and the Bureau again tracked Said’s movements, though an FBI informer indicated that “he did not consider Said to be the type of individual who would be involved in any terrorist activity”.

In May 1982, the New York FBI Special Agent in Charge sent a Secret report to FBI Director William Webster saying that Said’s name had “come to the attention of the N.Y. [FBI Office] in the context of a terrorist matter.” FBI headquarters was then requested “to contact liaison with State Department’s Middle East section with regard to their knowledge of Said”. A week later, Said’s file gained a photograph of him addressing the December 1980 Palestine Human Rights Campaign National Conference. One 1982 newspaper clipping added to the file attempted to connect his wife Mariam Said and the PLO to the funding of a full-page anti-Israel advertisement in the New York Times.

On September 3, 1982, FBI Director Webster instructed FBI librarians at Quantico to use their computerized New York Times index to locate all past references to Said. This generated a thirteen-page report containing abstracts of forty-nine NYT articles featuring Edward Said. These articles range from political columns by Said, features about him, to literary book reviews by Said. The New York Times Information Service was long used by the pre-Google FBI to compile dossiers on persons or organizations of interest. Thus did the FBI collected a filtered analysis of Said’s writings and public statements formed by the reports and prejudices of Times reporters and editors.

It did not matter how frequently or clearly Edward Said declared that he “totally repudiated terrorism in all its forms”. The FBI continued to focus its national security surveillance campaign on him. Had the FBI read the Palestine American Congress’s proposed constitution placed in Said’s file in 1979, they would have seen the group’s commitment to upholding the “basic fundamental human and national rights of all people and affirms its opposition to racism in all of its manifestations including Zionism and anti-Semitism”. Instead, they kept searching for connections to terrorism.

The FBI’s surveillance of Edward Said was similar to their surveillance of other Palestinian-American intellectuals. For example, Ibrahim Abu Lughod’s FBI file records similar monitoring ­ though Abu Lughod’s file finds the FBI attempting to capitalize on JDL death threats as a means of interviewing Lughod to collect information for his file.

amandaonwriting:

Writing Quote – Phyllis Duganne

amandaonwriting:

Writing Quote – Phyllis Duganne

amandaonwriting:

Happy Birthday, Elizabeth Gaskell, born 29 September 1810, died 12 November 1865
Five Quotes
Sometimes one likes foolish people for their folly, better than wise people for their wisdom.
People may flatter themselves just as much by thinking that their faults are always present to other people’s minds, as if they believe that the world is always contemplating their individual charms and virtues.
God has made us so that we must be mutually dependent. We may ignore our own dependence, or refuse to acknowledge that others depend upon us in more respects than the payment of weekly wages; but the thing must be, nevertheless. Neither you nor any other master can help yourselves. The most proudly independent man depends on those around him for their insensible influence on his character - his life.
Similarity of opinion is not always—I think not often—needed for fullness and perfection of love.
The future must be met, however stern and iron it be.
Gaskell was a British novelist and short story writer during the Victorian era. Her novels offer a detailed portrait of society and are of interest to social historians as well as lovers of literature.
Source for Image
by Amanda Patterson for Writers Write

amandaonwriting:

Happy Birthday, Elizabeth Gaskell, born 29 September 1810, died 12 November 1865

Five Quotes

  1. Sometimes one likes foolish people for their folly, better than wise people for their wisdom.
  2. People may flatter themselves just as much by thinking that their faults are always present to other people’s minds, as if they believe that the world is always contemplating their individual charms and virtues.
  3. God has made us so that we must be mutually dependent. We may ignore our own dependence, or refuse to acknowledge that others depend upon us in more respects than the payment of weekly wages; but the thing must be, nevertheless. Neither you nor any other master can help yourselves. The most proudly independent man depends on those around him for their insensible influence on his character - his life.
  4. Similarity of opinion is not always—I think not often—needed for fullness and perfection of love.
  5. The future must be met, however stern and iron it be.

Gaskell was a British novelist and short story writer during the Victorian era. Her novels offer a detailed portrait of society and are of interest to social historians as well as lovers of literature.

Source for Image

by Amanda Patterson for Writers Write

“Gaming culture was never anything but this weird, insular, xenophobic ghetto built around very toxic notions of masculinity and persecution complex. Games marketed at boys promoted and reinforced this hyper-machismo image, and gamers were seeking to embody it and so it went in an endless self-reinforcing circle. It is no accident that teenagers scream homophobic and gender slurs into their head-sets or brag about “raping” the opposing team in Call of Duty. It’s no accident that video game related message boards basically invented the “tits or gtfo” greeting. It is no accident that Anita Sarkesian could post feminist critiques of SF films, TV shows and novels without much harassment but the moment she started talking about video games, she instantly got death and rape threats. Because this community was not build around tolerance, acceptance of criticism or diversity. It was a fortress of solitude built by man-children to protect their toys from evil mainstream activists.”

It’s sad because the truth is that they don’t owe you their friendship or their love. They don’t owe you the same kind of relationship you desire from them. You can’t insist, through repeated action, that someone is now indebted to you because you have proven that you are worth of something. We make the choice to keep giving our attention and love to someone who has clearly demonstrated that they don’t want it, and it is always their choice to make if they one day decide they want to start reciprocating.

But to break the cycle and force yourself to stop initiating contact, to stop making effort, and to stop caring about their response — that is much harder. That means admitting that you have lost a battle you didn’t even want to acknowledge you were fighting. But when we’re trying to get someone to love us back, it’s always a battle. And it’s one we’re almost always guaranteed to lose.

—   Chelsea Fagan, When They Don’t Love You Back (via ho-isshortforhoney)

(via octobermoe)

“I was thinking how amazing it was that the world contained so many lives. Out in these streets people were embroiled in a thousand different matters, money problems, love problems, school problems. People were falling in love, getting married, going to drug rehab, learning how to ice-skate, getting bifocals, studying for exams, trying on clothes, getting their hair-cut and getting born. And in some houses people were getting old and sick and were dying, leaving others to grieve. It was happening all the time, unnoticed, and it was the thing that really mattered.”

—   from ‘Middlesex’ by Jeffrey Eugenides (via thestuffoflegend, growing-orbits) (via hannahsofia)