Written by William Dobson
After the excitement of last’s week Safar film festival, this is a relatively quiet week on the Middle Eastern cultural front in London. However, there are still a few interesting talks going on, so head down and enjoy! As per usual, get in touch if you feel we’ve missed anything.
Tuesday 2nd October
Memory and Conflict in Lebanon: Remembering and Forgetting the Past – King’s College London
This is the launch of Craig Larkins’ new book, in which he examines the legacy of Lebanon’s civil war and how the population, and the youth in particular, are dealing with their national past. Drawing on extensive qualitative research and social observation , he explores the efforts of those who wish to remember, so as not to repeat past mistakes, and those who wish to forget.
Shedding new light on trauma and the persistence of ethnic and religious hostility, this book hopes to offer a unique insight into Lebanon’s recurring communal tensions and a fresh perspective on the issue of war memory.
For details, see here
Wednesday 3rd October
Defending Islam and Free Speech – Frontline Club, London
Chaired by Paddy O’Connell, of BBC Radio 4′s Broadcasting House, will look at the difference between freedom of expression and provocation. Of course, the discussion is very much in light of the appearance on YouTube of an anti-Islam film produced in the US and the subsequent publication of cartoons depicting the Prophet Muhammad in France which have sparked protests in Muslim communities.
Embassies, cinemas and even popular western fast-food branches have been targeted by protestors. Join the Frontline Club as they examine the root causes of this wave of protest and violent attacks that have spread across the Middle East, Africa and Asia. In the same month that Salman Rushdie’s memoir documenting his life following the publication of The Satanic Verses is published, these recent events again open the debate on freedom of expression and freedom of religion. They will be looking at how this plays out in a world more connected than ever before, where an individuals freedom to express themselves can reach millions.
For more information, see here
Thursday 4th October
VIP lunch with H.E. Mr Amar Abba, Ambassador for Algeria – Bury House, London
The MEA is welcoming H.E. Amar Abba, Ambassador for People’s Democratic Republic of Algeria, as Guest of Honour at an Ambassadorial Lunch. During the event, he will be talking about opportunities for British trade and investment in Algeria, and the forthcoming MEA Trade Mission in November.
For details, see here
Saturday 6th October
Dowlatabadi’s Special Night – Brunei Gallery Lecture Theatre, SOAS, London
An evening of poetry, film and talk with the focus of the evening revolving around the Iranian writer and actor, Mahmoud Dowlatabadi, best known as a realist writer of stories of rural life, in which he largely draws on his own experiences.
For more information and tickets see here