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The Most Important Thing: Syrian Refugees

[Photos by Brian Sokol/UNHCR, text by UNHCR.] What would you bring with you if you had to flee your home and escape to another country? More than 1 million Syrians have been forced to ponder this question before making the dangerous flight to neighboring Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq or other countries in the ...  Read More »

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The Lens of a Youth Photography Collective: Documenting Life and War in Syria

[If you are unable to see the photo slide show above, please click here.] As much as the war in Syria is one of weapons, it is also a war of images. Photographs and videos circulated online have altered assumptions, confirmed biases, and framed narratives at every stage of ongoing developments. In the past year, a ...  Read More »

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She Who Tells a Story: Interview with the Photography Collective Rawiya

[Rawiya is a collective of photographers from the Middle East, which is garnering accolades and attention internationally. The members are Myriam Abdelaziz (Egypt/France, based in NY/Cairo), Tamara Abdul Hadi (Iraq/Canada, based in Beirut), Laura Boushnak (Palestine, based in Sarajevo), Tanya Habjouqa (Jordan/US, ...  Read More »

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Assarag: Habitat and the Imazighen of Morocco

(If the photo slide show does not appear above, please click here.) [The photos and text presented here are the result of my work in five Amazigh (also known as Berber) communities or distinct architectural ensembles in the south of Morocco.] My work in Morocco began in May 2002 when I was invited by a former high ...  Read More »

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من فكرتنا بنصور صورتنا

في هذه المجموعة من الكتابات، لثلاثة مصورين فلسطينيين لاجئين في مقتبل العمر، تعليقات على أعماالمصورة الأمريكية الأرجنتينية السندرا سنتغوينتي التي زارت فلسطين مرتين خلال الانتفاضة الثانية. محمد العزة وياسمين سالم وأريج أسعد، كانوا أطفالاً عندما التقطت المصورة السندرا هذه الصور. وقد وجدوا بعد سنوات طويلة أن لهذه الصور ...  Read More »

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Two Years and Counting: The Bahrain Uprising, in Pictures

Over the last two years, the fickle eye of the international media has strayed from the ongoing demonstrations in Bahrain. In February 2011, with the advent of the Arab uprisings, Bahrainis took to the streets to demand constitutional reform, equal rights, and, eventually, the overthrow of the ruling Bahraini ...  Read More »

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“The awakening of a radical reality”? Reflections on PhotoCairo 5

(PhotoCairo 5 was held between 14 November and 17 December 2012. It was organized by the Contemporary Image Collective in Cairo and curated by Mia Jankowicz.) PhotoCairo 5 was not photography and not Cairo. It was a mélange of video, conceptual art, installations, and photographic productions by local and ...  Read More »

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With Our Ideas, We Take Our Portrait: Reflections on the Work of Alessandra Sanguinetti

In this collection of essays, three young Palestinian photographers and refugees respond to the work of Alessandra Sanguinetti, an Argentinian-American photographer who visited Palestine twice during the second Intifada. Mohammad Al-Azza, Yasmeen Saleem, and Areej Asad were children when Sanguinetti took some of her ...  Read More »

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Permission to Caption

Ever since the start of the first Intifada in 1987, the West Bank and Gaza have become the center not only of Palestinian politics but also of international coverage of the Palestinians. On the ground, these processes of media production are collaborative and dialogical. Working with visiting journalists, ...  Read More »

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Toronto Event: Photo Auction: Once I Was Here: Benefit for Syrian Refugees (31 January 2013)

Once I Was Here: Benefit for Syrian Refugees 31 January 2013 A silent auction of photographs in aid of Syrian refugees featuring the works of world-renowned frontline photojournalists. Click h  Read More »

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“I Have The Picture!” Egypt’s Photographic Heritage between Neoliberalism and Digital Reproduction (Part II)

The Arab Image Foundation (AIF)—a private archiving initiative founded by a group of artists and collectors in 1997, and run through foreign and local grants—appears on the surface like the very antithesis of the Library of Alexandria in Egypt (discussed in Part I of this article). While based in Beirut, the AIF holds ...  Read More »

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"Light From the Middle East: New Photography" at the Victoria and Albert Museum: A Review

Light from the Middle East: New Photography Exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, UK 13 November 2012 – 7 April 2013 The photographer Abbas’s images of the Iranian revolution have been described as “the memory of the event.”[1] I certainly remember them. Or I remember the event. I remember anyway my ...  Read More »

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Bedouin Resolution: Standing Firm in the Jerusalem Periphery

[Photos by Tanya Habjouqa. Text by Francesca Albanese.] On 2 December 2012, in a cynically prompt move the day after Palestine’s successful bid for upgraded non-member observer state of the United Nations, Israel announced its plans to spearhead settlement expansion in the E1 area in the Jerusalem periphery. By ...  Read More »

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“Beirut Photographer”: An Ode to Memory

What does it mean to bear witness to events? What responsibility does the act of witnessing carry? These are the central questions evoked by George Azar and Mariam Shahin’s documentary film “Beirut Photographer.” Released on Al Jazeera English in part to remember the thirtieth anniversary of the 1982 Israeli invasion ...  Read More »

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Tahrir at Midnight: Protesting the Constitutional Decree

Photos by Bassam Haddad. Text by Ziad Abu-Rish and Bassam Haddad. [If the images do not show below, click here] After midnight, in the early hours of Wednesday 5 December 2012, I (Bassam) headed to Tahrir Square, which continued to be a flash point of contentious politics and opposition to the Egyptian president's ...  Read More »

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Do Photographs Pose an Existential Threat to Israel?

One of the most wrenching images from the November 2012 conflict between Israel and Hamas was that of BBC journalist Jihad Masharawi holding the shrouded body of his eleven-month-old son. His face is gripped with agony, his eyes closed as he looks upward. We can imagine that he feels utterly alone in his grief, but he ...  Read More »

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Safe Haven: Christians in Qaraqosh, Iraq

Photographs taken in early 2012 by Andy Spyra. Text essay by Sinan Antoon. The plight of Christians in the Arab world attracts disproportionate attention in the “West” mostly to score political and “civilizational” points. Nevertheless, it is a serious problem that deserves genuine concern. An understanding of the ...  Read More »

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Beirut Photographer: Interview with George Azar

In 1981, George Azar traveled from UC Berkeley to Beirut, Lebanon to see the Arab-Israeli conflict first hand. He got a job as a stringer, photographing the Lebanese civil war for the Associated Press and United Press International. He was captured by the Israelis during the 1982 invasion and taken to Israel, where he ...  Read More »

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Israeli Aggression in the Gaza Strip: In Pictures

[If the pictures of the slide show are not visible, please click here.] On 14 November Israel assassinated Hamas military leader Ahmad al-Ja'bari, simultaneously blowing up a truce mediated by Egyptian intelligence officials and accepted by Ja'bari, other Palestinian parties and - according to the Egyptians ...  Read More »

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Jadaliyya Launches Photography Page

With this bouquet of articles and photo essays, Jadaliyya is hereby launching a Photography Page. The Photography Page aims to provide a space for reflection on photography in its various forms and uses in the Middle East. We showcase the work of photographers active in the region and cultivate critical thinking ...  Read More »

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The Swallows of Syria

[Note: The views and testimonies herein are the refugees’ own, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the author or of Jadaliyya.] Somaya left Homs, Syria after finding the corpse of her tortured son in a sewage ditch. Zaynab escaped with her family when she discovered that Syrian soldiers kidnapped, raped, and ...  Read More »

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Imagining Tahrir

I. Egyptians saw themselves for the first time through their own eyes in Cairo’s Tahrir Square in January and February 2011, and reveled in that encounter. Participating in and recording that experience was to become part of the consciousness of a community that was ready to move heaven and earth to restructure ...  Read More »

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“I Have the Picture!” Egypt’s Photographic Heritage between Digital Reproduction and Neoliberalism (Part I)

Egypt has no sole institution devoted to the preservation and study of its one hundred fifty-year-old photographic history. Instead, photographs lurk in multiple private and institutional collections across the country. Plagued by decades of decreasing budgets, institutional neglect, and excessive gate-keeping, ...  Read More »

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Living Under Threat of Expulsion: Palestinian Women Photograph Life in Susiya Village

These photographs were taken by women residents of Susiya village from the Nawaja family, ranging from teenagers to the elderly. Here are their names: Wadcha, Basma, Iman, Iam, Hitam, Ula, Rabicha, Samicha, Sane, Samma, Hadija, Sanaa, and Khitam. In 2011, the women of Susiya documented their lives as a part of a ...  Read More »

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Cairo Event: In tribute to the history of studio photographic practice in Egypt: On Photography, at Studio Viennoise (14 November - 16 December 2012)

Cairo Event: In tribute to the history of studio photographic practice in Egypt: On Photography, at Studio Viennoise 14 November - 16 December 2012 (Soft Opening: 14 November at 7 pm. Closing event, “Finissage”: 16 December at 6 pm.) 7 Champollion Street, Downtown Cairo Daily 11am to 8pm, until 10pm during ...  Read More »

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Cairo Event: PhotoCairo 5 "more out of curiosity than conviction" (14 Nov - 17 Dec 2012)

Cairo Event: Photo Cairo 5: more out of curiosity than conviction 14 Nov – 17 Dec 2012 Photo Cairo 5: more out of curiosity than conviction is a large-scale contemporary art project in Downtown Cairo. Exhibition : 14 November-17 December 2012 Preview: 8pm, 14 November Artists: Mohamed Abdelkarim, David Degner, ...  Read More »

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The Syrian Refugee Crisis Intensifies

Over three hundred thousand refugees have fled across Syria’s borders to Turkey, Jordan, Iraq, and Lebanon, according to the latest UNHCR statistics. This number accounts for only those who have registered with the UN or are waiting to register. The UN also estimates that one to one and a half million people are ...  Read More »

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Demolishing Palestine

Since the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip began in 1967, Israel has demolished about 27,000 Palestinian homes and other structures crucial for a family’s livelihood, according to Israeli government statistics (Compiled by the Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions). Almost half of these were ...  Read More »

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Syrian Refugee Photo Essay

As the crisis in Syria continues to escalate, refugees are fleeing to the surrounding countries in huge numbers. According to the UNHCR, as of August 8 there are over one hundred thirty-eight thousand refugees registered for assistance – roughly fifty thousand in Turkey, thirty-nine thousand in Jordan, thirty-five ...  Read More »

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Recalling the Past: The Battle over History, Collective Memory and Memorialization in Egypt

History is inescapable in Egypt. Foreign tourists drawn to the abundant physical remains of Coptic, Pharaonic, Hellenic, and Islamic cultures are reminded of the contemporary past as they head downtown from the Cairo airport past the triumphant October War Panorama, a war museum commemorating the 1973 war with fighter ...  Read More »

About the Photography Page

The photography page aims to provide a space for reflection on photography in its various forms and uses in the Middle East. We showcase the work of photographers active in the region and cultivate critical thinking about photographic practices, representations, and history. The page publishes photo essays, articles, interviews, reviews and more. It also provides information on photographic archives, agencies, and institutions, exhibits, events, and publications.

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