Culture – Daily News Egypt https://dailynewsegypt.com Egypt’s Only Daily Independent Newspaper In English Sun, 24 Jun 2018 11:00:18 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.1 New temporary exhibition of Islamic civilisation artefacts kicks off in Suez  https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/24/new-temporary-exhibition-of-islamic-civilisation-artefacts-kicks-off-in-suez/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/24/new-temporary-exhibition-of-islamic-civilisation-artefacts-kicks-off-in-suez/#respond Sun, 24 Jun 2018 11:00:18 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=663603 The Ministry of Antiquities organised a new temporary exhibition in Suez, under the name Gems of Islamic Civilisation, with the aim of letting as many citizens as possible discover the Egyptian heritage that is only available to Cairo’s inhabitants. The exhibition, taking place in the Suez National Museum, showcases 51 Islamic relics which reflect the …

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The Ministry of Antiquities organised a new temporary exhibition in Suez, under the name Gems of Islamic Civilisation, with the aim of letting as many citizens as possible discover the Egyptian heritage that is only available to Cairo’s inhabitants. The exhibition, taking place in the Suez National Museum, showcases 51 Islamic relics which reflect the history of the civilisation and its achievements. 

The exhibition follows the strategy that outgoing minister of antiquities Khaled El-Anany established, which is organising several temporary exhibitions inside Egypt and abroad, with the aim of introducing Egypt’s ancient civilisation to as many people as possible. For two months, Suez residents will get to see some artefacts that will see light for the first time, and get to know each displayed relic and how people of the Islamic era used it.

Elham Salah, head of the museums’ sector at the Ministry of Antiquities, said that the exhibition is part of the ministry’s long-term plan of establishing several temporary exhibitions in several Egyptian museums of different governorates in order to display various Egyptian artefacts that are in storage or were recently discovered, according to state-owned media outlet EgyNews.

The exhibitions include artefacts that were used in homes, including pottery from different Islamic eras. The displays differ in shape and size, each with a description for its use.

The exhibition is the second temporary exhibition in the Suez National Museum, after Beauty Icon Over the Centuries took place last April. The first temporary exhibition showcased the tools Egyptian women used in taking care of their beauty over the years. The ancient relics showcased the steps and tools Egyptian women used to care for their skin, hair, and makeup over the centuries.

The temporary exhibitions strategy started to ramp up in the last year, with the direct supervision of El-Anany.

The first exhibition showcasing Egyptian artefacts in a foreign country, as part of the new policy, kicked off in Toronto, Canada in March, displaying the heritage and monuments of the Egyptian Fatimid era, and another displaying the artefacts of the cities of Thonis-Heracleion and Canopus, which were discovered under water after being lost for 1,000 years before they were found accidentally, while a third exhibition will soon be inaugurated for jewellery from ancient Egyptian eras. Tutankhamun is one of the most famous temporary exhibitions El-Anany inaugurated earlier this year. It opened in Los Angeles in March.

The exhibition showcased 166 objects belonging to Tutankhamun, which were transferred from the Museum of Egyptian Antiquities in Cairo, including alabaster pots, wooden boxes, and statues of the pharaoh. According to the museum, all of the 3,500 tickets for the first day of the exhibition were sold out, which led the museum to extend its opening for three additional hours after the official working hours, as regulations forbid hosting more than 100 persons inside the museum at a time.

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Nitroglycerin: Novel reveals secret side of man once believed to be Egyptian hero https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/24/nitroglycerin-novel-reveals-secret-side-of-man-once-believed-to-be-egyptian-hero/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/24/nitroglycerin-novel-reveals-secret-side-of-man-once-believed-to-be-egyptian-hero/#respond Sun, 24 Jun 2018 05:00:36 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=663553 Prominent novelist Moustafa Obeid published his fourth novel, Nitroglycerin, in which he tackles terrorism. Published by Kayan Publishing House, Obeid tells the story of a well-known Egyptian extremist from the 1920s who assassinated several politicians.  The novel features another side of the terrorist, Obeid said, which was featured in one of the most famous of …

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Prominent novelist Moustafa Obeid published his fourth novel, Nitroglycerin, in which he tackles terrorism.

Published by Kayan Publishing House, Obeid tells the story of a well-known Egyptian extremist from the 1920s who assassinated several politicians. 

The novel features another side of the terrorist, Obeid said, which was featured in one of the most famous of the golden era’s films, “Fe Baytona Ragol” (A Man in Our House), based on a novel by prominent writer Ihsan Abdel Quddous.

The novel spotlights another side of the man who was featured as a national hero who fights for Egypt’s freedom against British occupation. As the story evolves, the novel tells of the rise of the terrorist and his assassination of important Arab politicians in Egypt and Syria.

Though handed three death sentences, the man escaped, and the story reveals the unknown side of the man once believed to be an Egyptian hero.

It also reveals the main events of his life since his childhood in Maadi to the transformation of his personality and the beliefs he harboured during his military service, and how he was used to kill the enemies of King Farouk.

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Dostoevsky, dolls and other Russian exports https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/22/dostoevsky-dolls-and-other-russian-exports/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/22/dostoevsky-dolls-and-other-russian-exports/#respond Fri, 22 Jun 2018 15:46:00 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=663494 The post Dostoevsky, dolls and other Russian exports appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

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From vodka to beloved opera classics – DW’s Anastassia Boutsko takes a look at World Cup host Russia’s most popular exports and clears up some cultural cliches.Whichever way you look at it, we Russians often hear that we hail from a land of bears, forests and drunkards. Those of us living abroad and flying to Russia for Christmas are warned against over-consumption of vodka. If my son recounts tales of wild bears attacking our dacha (country house) near Moscow, none of his fourth-grade classmates doubt the veracity of his story.

Have you ever searched for “Russia” in Google Images? In addition to the map of the enormous country, right near the top of the search results comes the epic Cathedral of the Intercession of the Most Holy Theotokos on the Moat, better known as Saint Basil’s Cathedral on Red Square. There’s a general perception that this is your average Russian church.

According to recent research, the imposing church was built in the 16th century by Italian architects who also built the Moscow Kremlin and its cathedrals.

It is believed that the builders of the church, which has a foundation stone laid to mark the victory over the Tatars, were inspired by the Italian Renaissance but also by oriental architecture.

The 10 domes stand for the 10 saints who were celebrated during the siege of Kazan by Ivan the Terrible; St. Basil is one of them. In any case, the cathedral is absolutely atypical for Russian church architecture. But like many Russian stereotypes, this one is worth a second look.

Click through the gallery above to explore Russia’s most popular exports — which often tie in with the national cliches.

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Superstitious soccer: Weird rituals on the football pitch https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/22/superstitious-soccer-weird-rituals-on-the-football-pitch/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/22/superstitious-soccer-weird-rituals-on-the-football-pitch/#respond Fri, 22 Jun 2018 14:35:00 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=663510 The post Superstitious soccer: Weird rituals on the football pitch appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

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World Cup players like Cristiano Ronaldo and Manuel Neuer rely purely on skill, right? Not always. These players and coaches have quirky pre-match routines to secure that extra bit of good luck.Faith can move mountains, so they say. Perhaps that’s why so many soccer stars and their trainers still follow certain rituals in the hope that the gods of fortune will smile down upon them.

Brazil’s Mario Zagallo – the first person to win the World Cup as a player and a coach – believed in the magical power of the number 13, while France’s former coach Raymond Domenech chose his squad for the 2010 world championship based on astrology. He had a particular dislike for Scorpios and Leos.

For a while, his Argentinian counterpart Carlos Bilardo forced his players to take a cab to national games because they once won a game after their bus got into trouble and they had to hail a cab.

Back in the 90s, French sweeper Laurent Blanc used to kiss the bald head of his goalkeeper, Fabien Barthez, before each game. Germany’s current goalkeeper Manuel Neuer taps each of his goalposts for luck before kick-off.

Chewing gum is the key to success

And if you don’t stick to your habitual routine, things can go really wrong. Take the late Johan Cruyff and his legendary pre-match ritual, for example.

First, the Netherlands player would box his goalkeeper in the stomach, then he would walk across the pitch and spit his chewing gum out in the direction of the rival team’s goal.

He once admitted to the media that he was only able to concentrate on a game after completing this routine. During the European Cup final in 1969, he realized he had forgotten his chewing gum. It was too late: His team, Ajax Amsterdam, went down 4:1 against AC Milan.

The curse of the Socceroos

But the “powers that be” might not always work in your favor. Johnny Warren, a former Australia player, related in his autobiography that, when things were looking bleak for Australia during World Cup qualifiers in Mozambique in 1969, the team turned to a witch doctor for help.

The story goes that the witch doctor cursed the Aussies’ opponents by burying some bones next to the goalposts, and the Australians won the match. But, after the team left the country without paying the witch doctor, he took revenge by putting a curse on the “Socceroos.”

And that was that – the Aussies were out of luck for decades. That is until Warren, the team’s former captain, returned to Mozambique and begged for the curse to be lifted.

The former witch doctor had long since been replaced by a new one who asked Warren to sit down on the soccer field where the Socceroos had won in 1969. The witch doctor then killed a chicken, splashed its blood across the field and asked Warren to smear himself with mud from the pitch.

Believe it or not, the team promptly qualified for the 2006 World Cup. It’s not known whether or not the Socceroos are working with witch doctors during the current championship.

Placebo effect or soccer god?

According to psychologists, superstitious rituals can have a kind of “placebo effect” on the players and trainers: If they believe it will help, it can give them more confidence and cause them to perform better.

And it’s not only the players who are at it – there are plenty of superstitious fans, too. According to a survey carried out by German polling company Forsa, an incredible eight percent of Germans believe in a soccer god. We’ll have to wait and see who they will be helping to World Cup glory this year.

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Indian Embassy in Cairo celebrates International Yoga Day https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/20/indian-embassy-in-cairo-celebrates-international-yoga-day/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/20/indian-embassy-in-cairo-celebrates-international-yoga-day/#respond Wed, 20 Jun 2018 20:00:24 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=663339 The Indian Embassy in Cairo celebrates the International Yoga Day on Wednesday, through a public event taking place at El-Horriya Park. The event takes place for the fourth year in a row, under the arrangement of the Indian Charge d’Affaires Vinod Bahade. Aiming to stress the importance of yoga and spread the Indian culture in …

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The Indian Embassy in Cairo celebrates the International Yoga Day on Wednesday, through a public event taking place at El-Horriya Park.

The event takes place for the fourth year in a row, under the arrangement of the Indian Charge d’Affaires Vinod Bahade. Aiming to stress the importance of yoga and spread the Indian culture in Egyptian society. Celebrating International Yoga Day is one of the main events, regularly organised in Egypt.

“Yoga, the precious gift of ancient Indian tradition, provides a holistic approach to physical and mental health. Yoga is widely practiced in Egypt,” Bahade said in a press conference, adding, “we are expecting a large number of people to participate in these events.”

He also stated that the celebrations expand to reach out other governorates, including Alexandria and Ismailia, in collaboration with the Egyptian government.

The celebrations will take place in Alexandria at Bibliotheca Alexandria, on 22 June, and in Ismailia, at Nadi-El-Mawani ground, on 23 June, he added.

In 2015, the International Yoga Day was acknowledged on the 21 June, to be held every year, with the support of 177 co-sponsoring countries the United Nations General Assembly.

The assembly stated in its resolution that yoga provided an integrated style for health and happiness and it stressed on the importance of increasing awareness on the benefits of yoga around the world.

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Conductor Simon Rattle bids farewell to the Berlin Philharmonic https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/20/conductor-simon-rattle-bids-farewell-to-the-berlin-philharmonic/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/20/conductor-simon-rattle-bids-farewell-to-the-berlin-philharmonic/#respond Wed, 20 Jun 2018 14:57:00 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=663290 The post Conductor Simon Rattle bids farewell to the Berlin Philharmonic appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

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On June 20, the British maestro conducts his last symphony concert as the Berlin Philharmonic’s music director. The collaboration between orchestra and conductor ends as it began: with Mahler’s Sixth Symphony.The end of an era: In the Berlin Philharmonie and in live transmissions via live stream and in movie theaters across Europe, Sir Simon gives the downbeat to his farewell at 7:30 p.m. CEST on Wednesday.

It ends as it began. In 1987, Rattle gave his debut with the Berliners with the same work, Mahler’s Sixth.

In 2002, he began his stint as artistic director and principal conductor of the renowned orchestra with Mahler as well; then it was the Symphony No. 5.

The combination of Mahler, Rattle and the Philharmonic marked other highlights during his tenure in Berlin, notably in 2010/11 and 2011/12 seasons, when he conducted the composer’s complete symphonies.

An open-air event titled “Goodbye, Sir Simon” on June 24 marks Rattle’s very last appearance as chief conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic. The playbill at Berlin’s Waldbühne includes popular works by the composers Joseph Canteloube and Paul Lincke.

Rattle’s switch to the London Symphony Orchestra was announced in 2015, and he has stood at the helm of both orchestras since September 2017. After he is succeeded in Berlin by Kirill Petrenko, Rattle plans to remain a resident of the German capital and to lead orchestral and opera performances there.

Strong numbers in the Rattle era

In his 16-year tenure, Sir Simon Rattle led the Berlin Philharmonic in some 1,100 concerts. The 63-year-old’s achievements include a strong public relations campaign, multimedia dissemination of music notably with the “Digital Concert Hall” program, the establishment of the orchestra’s own CD label and various projects exposing non-concert goers to classical music. The Berlin Philharmonic’s sponsorship of the National Youth Orchestra of Germany is a further achievement.

Read more: #BerlinPhil: How the Berlin Philharmonic became a global brand

Rattle, who the German daily Die Welt described as having a “ravenous appetite for repertory,” opened wide sectors of music to his Berlin musicians, including works by British and Nordic composers, notably Sibelius.

This brought criticism from within the orchestra in the early years, some members feeling that this had come at the expense of maintaining the core German repertory by this tradition-steeped orchestra. A trained percussionist, Rattle has often been praised for the rhythmic power of his renditions and his transparent sound.

Petrenko takes the baton

As the world’s only classical music orchestra whose musicians elect their principal conductors, the Berlin Philharmonic chose Kirill Petrenko as Rattle’s successor in 2015. It was a difficult process, and an apparent change of direction.

Unlike Rattle, the 46-year-old Russian maestro gives no interviews. Credited by the Süddeutsche Zeitung with a “relentless dedication to music,” Petrenko is notoriously tuned to detail and a fanatic rehearser.

His tenure begins officially in the summer of 2019, but Petrenko will appear with the orchestra at the opening of the 2018/19 season in a program with Beethoven and Richard Strauss, perhaps signaling a return to the German core repertory. In a subsequent tour to Salzburg, Lucerne and to the London Proms, the playbill includes works by Paul Dukas, Sergei Prokofiev and Franz Schmidt.

Read more: Opinion: Back to basics with Petrenko

Difficult – and beautiful

“It is at once the world’s most beautiful and most difficult conducting job,” Sir Simon Rattle revealed to Die Welt in 2015. “Usually at the same time! And there’s no way whatsoever one can prepare for how hard it can really be.” Rattle continued, “This orchestra has made it very clear to me that I cannot begin rehearsals with them without having a concept for the sound I am seeking.”

In extensive interviews for a DW radio series in 2004, Sir Simon summed up his work with the Berliners thus: “The job of being the music director of the Berliner Philharmoniker is sometimes like being the most privileged animal tamer in the world. You go up to the door of the cage of these wild tigers, and you let them out, and you see what happens when they run rampant.”

Despite episodes of friction with the self-confident and self-managed Berlin musicians, Sir Simon Rattle had these typically enthusiastic words: “They don’t ask, ‘How?’ They ask, ‘Why?’ That’s why I love working with them.”

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Amal Farid dies at 80 https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/19/amal-farid-dies-at-80/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/19/amal-farid-dies-at-80/#respond Tue, 19 Jun 2018 18:12:50 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=663134 Prominent actress Amal Farid passed away on Tuesday at the age of 80 at Shobra Public Hospital, after battling severe health issues for months. The actress, known for her successful duets with late artist Abdel Halim Hafez, suffered from complications of replacing her left hip joint, which led to deteriorating her condition and admitting her …

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Prominent actress Amal Farid passed away on Tuesday at the age of 80 at Shobra Public Hospital, after battling severe health issues for months.

The actress, known for her successful duets with late artist Abdel Halim Hafez, suffered from complications of replacing her left hip joint, which led to deteriorating her condition and admitting her to the hospital on Monday. Farid was admitted to the hospital based on the requests of Minister of Social Solidarity Ghada Wally, who stated that Farid was sent to be treated at state expenses.

Farid was buried on Tuesday away from media coverage based on her last testament. Local media outlets said that Farid’s testament also included not having any funeral.

Farid took part in a few films before she retired from the silver screen in 1969. She was first introduced to the cinema after she won a beauty pageant held by a local magazine.

In her first roles on the silver screen, she stood in front of Faten Hamama in her film “Maw’ed Maa’ Al-Sa’ada” (An Appointment with Happiness). However, she gained her popularity for her calm, peaceful beauty as she performed the starring roles with Abdel Halim Hafez in most of her films.

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Kassel decides to buy obelisk in honor of refugees — but there’s a catch https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/19/kassel-decides-to-buy-obelisk-in-honor-of-refugees-but-theres-a-catch/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/19/kassel-decides-to-buy-obelisk-in-honor-of-refugees-but-theres-a-catch/#respond Tue, 19 Jun 2018 13:32:00 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=663104 The post Kassel decides to buy obelisk in honor of refugees — but there’s a catch appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

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Since 2017, the obelisk has stood in Kassel, the German city that hosts the Documenta art exhibition. Now the city has decided to buy it — if it manages to agree with the work’s creator on its placement.On Monday, the local council in the German city of Kassel decided to buy a monument erected to honor “strangers and refugees” in the city center for last year’s Documenta contemporary art exhibition.

However, the final location for the obelisk is yet unclear.

The concrete column, created by US-Nigerian artist Olu Oguibe, bears the words, “I was a stranger and you took me in” written in gold lettering in German, English, Turkish and Arabic on each of its sides.

A majority of the city council agreed to the purchase and also set the end of June as the deadline for deciding where it should go, a city spokeswoman said.

However, if creator Oguibe and the City of Kassel cannot come to an agreement on its final placement, the obelisk will be dismantled.

Where to go with it

Oguibe initially insisted that it should remain at Königsplatz (King’s Square), as it had been “designed for this location.”

The city rejected the condition, saying it wants to reserve the location for future Documenta exhibitions. The artist later said it could be moved to the Documenta Institute, which is still being planned.

Artworks featured at Documenta, the international exhibition held in Kassel every five years, often become popular among locals and are purchased through donations.

But just one day after fundraising began in late January for Oguibe’s artwork — priced at €600,000 ($693,000), someone painted the words “€600,000? Are you crazy?” onto the obelisk.

The Kassel fundraiser ultimately fell short of its target, in the end raising only €126,000. Oguibe accepted the sum, however, proposing a compromise on its location.

als/eg (dpa, epd)

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What makes the Bachfest in Leipzig so popular https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/19/what-makes-the-bachfest-in-leipzig-so-popular/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/19/what-makes-the-bachfest-in-leipzig-so-popular/#respond Tue, 19 Jun 2018 13:23:00 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=663106 The post What makes the Bachfest in Leipzig so popular appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

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With almost 80,000 visitors, the Bachfest in Leipzig has once again broken its attendance record. Director Michael Maul talked to DW about the recipe behind this extraordinary success.Ten concerts with 33 sacred cantatas were given just over the opening weekend alone. Numerous passions, all of Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos, as well as his cello suites and his entire keyboard practice series, known as Clavier Übung were all performed.

The Bachfest in Leipzig (June 8-17) featured a rich program without additional budgetary resources. A new director has been heading the renowned event, Michael Maul. DW met the musicologist, author and researcher at the Bach Archive in Leipzig to find out more about the festival’s current success story.

DW: 33 cantatas in 48 hours: Why did you choose this major cantata cycle for the festival’s opening weekend?

Michael Maul: The cantatas have always been performed during the Bachfest. Our objective was to highlight their high quality. And we wanted to show that it’s not just the “Bekümmernis Cantata,” or the “Kreuzstab Cantata” that fascinate audiences. We wanted to show that this is a huge oeuvre that Bach composed under enormous time pressure — something one wouldn’t even notice.

Read more: Everything you need to know about the Bach cantatas

It’s the kind of event that could almost be compared to a pilgrimage. It offered a wonderful mixture of Bach’s best known and most interesting works. In my view, that fits perfectly well with the format of a festival, especially one taking place in the city of Leipzig that has always been closely associated with Bach.

Visitor numbers are proof of the fact that we hit a nerve with that. The complete ticket for all 10 concerts in the cantata cycle was already sold out six months ago.

Famous British conductor Sir John Eliot Gardiner, who’s also the president of the Bach Archive, was chosen as the interpreter. Was that choice clear from the start?

Yes, Sir John Eliot Gardiner played an important role from the beginning, and it was clear that he would perform with his Monteverdi Choir and the English Baroque Soloists.

The remaining question was, who else should be invited? I proposed musicians who, through their performances, had already gained a complete overview of Bach’s cantatas. There are only three such ensembles: The Bach Collegium Japan with Masaaki Suzuki, Ton Koopman with the Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra, and the Gächinger Kantorei Stuttgart. And it was clear that we would integrate the Thomaner Choir Leipzig, deeply ingrained in the Bach tradition in Leipzig. We therefore had five ensembles to fill 10 concerts.

You are a musicologist, with an expertise on Johann Sebastian Bach and his time. Research work is a rather lonely kind of work. But now, you are also the director of the Bachfest. Are these two worlds compatible with each other — quiet research on the one hand while dealing with the public on the other?

I find it quite hard to hide my enthusiasm for Bach. I love his music, and because I love it so much, I want to find out as much as possible about its background and the era during which it was created.

The best way to accomplish this is to go to the places where relics of the era are located. Through archive research, I try to find out more about the world in which Bach’s cantatas were created, the conditions for performances at the time. Very often, you don’t find anything. But when you do come across a little new puzzle part, you can immediately inform all those who also love Bach about it. I get high on such moments.

It’s also a wonderful opportunity for the research institution Bach Archive to carry out the biggest Bachfest at the most important Bach location.

As a Bach scholar, I have an enormous advantage vis-a-vis scientists who do research on nuclear physics or chemistry. Bach’s music is accessible to everyone, they can all listen to his music, and form an opinion about it.

In this regard, we of the Bach Archive and the Bachfest enjoy making the composer more accessible. I like to talk about how exciting it is, because I really do find it exciting. That’s why my job offers a perfect mixture, allowing me to be a bookworm at archive and in the spotlight at the festival (laughs).

Read more: Living with the only real portrait of Bach

The Bachfest Leipzig was restructured in 2000. By now, it has become the world’s most significant Bach festival. This year’s cantata cycle had an enormous impact. Will this tendency continue?

This year’s Bachfest was financed on the same budget that we already had over the last few years. We planned our expenses very courageously, and based on the assumption that once the program was right, we could increase our offer of tickets by 50 percent while also selling 50 percent more tickets. And then the demand actually rose disproportionately. Although we had flooded the market, there was a much higher demand than was the case during the last few years.

Based on our visitor statistics of the last few years, we knew that 90 percent of our guests wouldn’t come from Saxony [the German state where Leipzig is located], and that they would stay 3.7 days on average. That means, people need to pay for plane tickets and accommodation. That’s why we tried to put together combined offers for visitors from San Francisco, Tokyo, Düsseldorf or Madrid, as well as produce programs that would show them that our highlights don’t only take place on Mondays and Fridays, but in small continuing cycles.

How can you get visitors who were carried away by the cantata cycle to come again next year?

Our slogan in 2019 will be “court composer Bach,” which means that the focus will be on works that Bach composed in courts, and for courts.

Contrary to the cliché, Bach was employed by royal courts for many years during his career. In Cöthen, he served as bandmaster, in Weimar as court concertmaster. Even during the 27 years that Bach worked as a Thomas cantor in Leipzig, he continued to have honorary titles at neighboring court orchestras, and wrote works for them.

Next year, we’ll also perform a small cantata cycle. In four concerts, we will play the cantatas that Bach composed in Weimar, each time in a totally different performance style. I’m not worried about next year. We’ll have a huge offer of tickets once again, and I hope that people will make use of it.

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French author Edouard Louis: Why Macron will lead voters to the far right https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/19/french-author-edouard-louis-why-macron-will-lead-voters-to-the-far-right/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/19/french-author-edouard-louis-why-macron-will-lead-voters-to-the-far-right/#respond Tue, 19 Jun 2018 12:14:00 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=663117 The post French author Edouard Louis: Why Macron will lead voters to the far right appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

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France overlooks its lower class, Edouard Louis tells DW. The literary star defies his country’s elites and social taboos with his autobiographical novels, including his latest, History of Violence — now out in English.DW: Just like your first novel, The End of Eddy, your latest work, titled History of Violence, is also strictly autobiographical. Why?

Edouard Louis: The world is currently saturated with fiction; it’s already structured by lies and fabrications. One of the reasons why people like Chelsea Manning and Julian Assange are persecuted is because they have showed us that governments are lying to us.

When the French government claims that we can’t welcome migrants, it’s a lie. Why don’t they just say, “We don’t want to welcome migrants,” instead? That would be the truth.

I am personally affected by the fact that these fictions are structuring our lives. That’s why when I write, I believe it should be a space of resistance and therefore a space of truth.

Read more: Paris migrant camp to be evicted on French government orders

In your second novel, History of Violence, you describe how you were raped by another young man. Wasn’t it painful to describe this personal experience in detail?

Of course it was very difficult to write about the things I’ve experienced personally, but I also believe it’s interesting because it’s difficult. When I start writing, I ask myself: What cannot be said? What is too difficult to say? And that’s what needs to be said. You can get rid of the rest, because it’s not interesting.

History of Violence tells the story of a dramatic night. It started out as you brought a young man, the son an Algerian immigrant, to your place. What first promised to be a passionate encounter ended in violence, and almost murder…

The novel explores how passion could so quickly switch to destruction. It was impressive to realize how different forms of violence were suddenly [superimposed] at the same time: the violence of racism, of French post-colonialism, of social classes and of homophobia, because this person in my book – and therefore in real life as well – who raped me is someone who is gay, who is attracted to men, but who grew up in France, a very homophobic society. These multiple layers of violence are something I wanted to deal with as an author, as it’s not being done in politics.

Read more: Taking on racism and hate speech in France

You also dealt with violence, racism and homophobia in your successful debut novel, The End of Eddy, in which you described how you left the poverty of a French village.

The End of Eddy describes a milieu which hasn’t been given much consideration until now. The initial reaction from the Parisian publishers I had sent my manuscript to was, “We cannot publish this because it’s too far-fetched; we can’t believe such poverty exists.” The lower class has completely disappeared from politics, from the arts and literature.

The End of Eddy caused quite a stir, and not only in France. At the time of its publication, the far-right Front National party was gaining ground in the country, and your novel became the book of the hour. What motivated you to write it?

When we talk about “France” these days, it does not include my parents and the people of the lower working class. This deep sense of injustice pushed me to write the book. It’s more than a form of invisibility; it’s a very violent form of exclusion, because readers weren’t even aware that the characters I described in my books actually existed.

These people who I’ve known since my childhood are pained by this invisibility and take revenge. They vote for the far right, for the Front National. It’s their way of saying, I exist! That’s why I want to make them visible. Authors should always ask themselves: What is absent in literature?

Read more: Found in translation: Foreign books Germans are reading

When Emmanuel Macron beat Marine Le Pen’s Front National in the French election, the new president was seen by many as a new hope, as someone who could lead France out of its crisis. Why are you personally critical of him?

Unfortunately, Emmanuel Macron’s victory is actually a victory for the Front National on the long term. If you look at the history of the far right in France and in Germany, the Front National and the AfD are parties that emerge from social humiliation, from the violent exclusion of social classes.

And in a way, that’s what Emmanuel Macron embodies. He embodies this ultra contemptuous, ultra elitist technocratic bourgeoisie. It’s people like him that lead people to adhere to the Front National and to the far right.

The apparition of Emmanuel Macron in French politics represents “the end of shame,” because all of a sudden politicians feel they can openly insult the poor.

And to me, that’s what’s violent and dramatic, because every time Emmanuel Macron speaks it’s to insult the poor, it’s to insult the people I describe in my books. I write to rebuild this shame, to make rulers and people like Macron feel ashamed.

DW met Edouard Louis at the Frankfurt Book Fair in October 2017.

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Christie’s to offer Egyptian artefacts to be auctioned https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/19/christies-to-offer-egyptian-artefacts-to-be-auctioned/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/19/christies-to-offer-egyptian-artefacts-to-be-auctioned/#respond Tue, 19 Jun 2018 08:00:34 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=663010 Following a chain of ancient Egyptian artefacts that are auctioned for individuals to purchase, Cristie’s Auction House announced putting dozens of Egyptian antiquities up for auction, which is set to take place on 3 July. The antiquities verified that belong to several periods in the ancient Pharaonic times. Under the name of “Antiquities,” the booklet …

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Following a chain of ancient Egyptian artefacts that are auctioned for individuals to purchase, Cristie’s Auction House announced putting dozens of Egyptian antiquities up for auction, which is set to take place on 3 July.

The antiquities verified that belong to several periods in the ancient Pharaonic times. Under the name of “Antiquities,” the booklet displayed around 40 statues, some of them featuring Egyptian goddesses.

Among the statues to be auctioned is a bronze statue of Ihy, which dates back to the Late Period among the 26th and 30th Dynasties.

Ihy, whose name means the “sistrum player,” is the son of Horus and the goddess Hourth. He is always featured playing the sistrum, a musical instrument played by ancient Egyptians.

Another statue dating to the 26th Dynasty is a bronze kneeling pharaoh that is expected to be sold for €35,000-55,000.

The statue features a pharaoh kneeling on his knees and holding in his hands two pots as offerings to gods. He is featured wearing the white crown of Upper Egypt.

Wadjet-Baset is the name of another statue offered for auction. The statue features a goddess sitting with the face of a lion, while her head is topped with a cobra. It combines between two goddesses of Upper Egypt: Baset, the protector of Upper Egypt represented by the face of the lion, and Wadjet, represented by the cobra. The sun-facing cobra also represents the Nile Delta. The statue, like many others of the same era, features two combined aspects in one entity.

A limestone relief from the Old Kingdom is also offered at the auction. The relief dates back to the 5th Dynasty and is engraved with three females holding baskets above their heads that are believed to hold loaves of bread, with further offerings in their hands.

Earlier in May, Christie’s Auction House also put up for auction a rare book that describes Egypt. The original version of the rare book describes Egypt’s landscapes, culture, and traditions through the eyes of the French army during its expedition.

The book is the first descriptive book that features all of Egypt’s landscapes and places.

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Artist survives three-day burial in Australia https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/18/artist-survives-three-day-burial-in-australia/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/18/artist-survives-three-day-burial-in-australia/#respond Mon, 18 Jun 2018 09:56:00 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=662969 The post Artist survives three-day burial in Australia appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

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The 73-year-old performance artist Mike Parr emerged alive after being buried for three days under a busy road. Billed as a tribute to victims of totalitarian violence, the stunt was part of an arts festival in Hobart.Australian performance artist Mike Parr surfaced from his underground container without saying a word late on Sunday.

He had been buried in a steel container under a busy road for 72 hours as part of Tasmania state’s annual Dark Mofo festival, which celebrates darkness through large-scale public art, food, film and music.

“The anxiety of the artist’s disappearance is the point of the piece,” organizers explained.

Parr’s performance was an attempt to highlight “the shadow cast by the genocidal violence of 19th century British colonialism in Australia,” organizers said. The Aboriginal population in the state of Tasmania was nearly totally destroyed during that period.

Read more: Belgian artist cut free after chaining himself to marble block to show ‘burden of history’

Used to being shocking

“He is an endurance performance artist and he’s been doing this for many years, so his body is quite used to (it),” Dark Mofo curator Jarrod Rawlins told reporters.

Heavy machinery carefully removed the asphalt that had sealed Parr into the mini-shipping container on Thursday.

Oxygen was pumped into the container during the three-day period. Parr had access to water, reading and writing material, a heater and a distress button in case anything went wrong. He had a small light with him, but no food. A bucket was provided for sanitary use.

Some spectators found the feat thought-provoking, while others were baffled by it.

“People work a lifetime underground. This goose spends three days in a box doing frig all, calls it art and it makes the news,” an unimpressed commentator, Rodney Gibbison, wrote on Facebook.

Parr has frequently given controversial performances, including one in which he used an ax to hack off his prosthetic arm, which he had filled with minced meat and blood.

Read more: Eight hours with extreme performance artist Marina Abramović

The Dark Mofo Festival, produced by Hobart’s Museum of Old and New Art, has sparked other controversy as well, with some Christians upset over inverted crosses being erected on the city’s waterfront.

Other artists billed on the festival program include American musician, filmmaker and all-around maverick Laurie Anderson.

als/eg (AFP, dpa, Reuters)

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Thomas Mann was disappointed by America’s populism https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/18/thomas-mann-was-disappointed-by-americas-populism/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/18/thomas-mann-was-disappointed-by-americas-populism/#respond Mon, 18 Jun 2018 09:39:00 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=662986 The post Thomas Mann was disappointed by America’s populism appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

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The German novelist and 1929 Nobel Prize in Literature laureate moved to the US during WWII. He was however frustrated by how the country developed under McCarthy — and his observations echo today’s political situation.DW: As a Thomas Mann researcher, what do you like most about the writer?

Heinrich Detering: I’d say Thomas Mann is one of the most entertaining writers in world literature, and one of the funniest. It’s odd that people still haven’t realized that novels like Buddenbrooks, The Magic Mountain as well as Joseph and his Brothers contain some of the funniest lines and dialogues ever.

Then, of course, he has all the characteristics you would expect of him: Reading his works can help you reflect and fuel imagination, and you can crisscross entire mountains of western culture. It’s difficult to be bored with Thomas Mann.

Read more: German-language winners of the Nobel Literature Prize

You’re going to be a fellow and scholar in the residency program at the Thomas Mann mansion in LA. What does that mean for you?

First of all, it means I’ll get to meet “old acquaintances.” Over the years, I’ve read and written a lot about what went on in this house — meetings that took place there, texts that were written, and conflicts Mann grappled with there, internally and with others. And I never even entered the mansion!

I once stood in front of the house when I was a young postgraduate, but it was private property so I couldn’t get a step closer. So I now want to breathe a bit of the local atmosphere, which is very important.

I also believe that in times of what I’d say are choppy trans-Atlantic relations, when the two continents seem further apart than they have been in a long time, it’s more than just a platitude to look at what it means to actually practice German-American literary, cultural and intellectual relations.

Ties between Germany and the US aren’t at their best at the moment, that is true. Can Thomas Mann, who was a kind of crossover artist, serve as an inspiring model?

Yes, he can, because he went through many situations similar to what we are experiencing right now. He was disappointed — maybe that was his biggest disappointment — that in America, a new populist mass movement emerged in the form of the Cold War almost seamlessly after Germany’s Nazis were triumphantly vanquished.

The word “populist” didn’t exist at the time, but nothing else was lacking.

In 1947, Thomas Mann wrote in his diary that “rule of law was declining” and observed a creeping new form of “fascist violence,” with all the characteristics of populism, agitation against the media, anti-intellectualism recurring racism and so forth — it was something he was horrified to watch. Everything connected to the name “McCarthy” was a mess of authoritarian and anti-democratic movements that Thomas Mann experienced and countered in word and text.

There are quite a few texts about those experiences that are rarely read even though they are still as current as the major novels written in that period. Much remains to be rediscovered.

Would you say Thomas Mann’s disappointment is comparable to the disappointment many Germans currently feel with regard to the US?

One could almost say that, from Thomas Mann’s point of view, the transition from the glorified persona of Roosevelt to McCarthyism bears similarities to the transition from Obama to the Trump movement. Perhaps it’s not simply about anecdotal analogies coming together in both cases, but similar constellations of American liberalism and reactions.

What’s the solution? Thomas Mann wrote; what will you do?

As a fellow, I plan to try on a smaller scale what Thomas Mann did on a large scale in world literature, namely to remind of past traditions of global liberal thinking and life in the broadest sense, and perhaps to learn a lesson, too.

What he did in many of his speeches, essays and in a big way in the Joseph novels — the last volume unmistakably combines biblical traits with contemporary American characteristics — is something one could endeavor today.

This could be achieved by rediscovering buried texts and giving them a voice, for instance works by protagonists of German-American ties, such as Carl Schurz [Eds: a German revolutionary who emigrated to the US in the late 1840s and became a politician] or a forgotten writer named Franz — later: Francis — Daniel Pastorius [Eds: a lawyer and the only German baroque writer in the US], an amusing poet and one of the first to fight against slavery.

There are many hidden literary and political traditions that would be worth unearthing and bringing into the present.

Read more: KINO favorites: 7 great movies inspired by German books

Are you looking forward to your stay in the US?

A year ago, I would have answered with an enthusiastic yes. Meanwhile, I have to admit that I have strangely mixed feelings as I head to the mansion’s dedication; perhaps because fear of what I might discover there counters the joy of spending time in this lovely house. The present has poured vinegar into the historic pleasure.

I was in the US when the Tea Party movement first massively made itself known to the public, during the battle against Obama’s health care reforms. I was shocked by how the aggressive racist discourse that you couldn’t escape suddenly darkened my bright image of America. I don’t know if something similar will happen to me again. I certainly hope not.

Heinrich Detering, born in 1959, currently teaches contemporary German literature and comparative literature studies at Göttingen University and was also guest professor at several US universities. From 2011 to 2017, he was president of the Germany Academy for Language and Literature. In 2018, he and three other fellows head to the Thomas Mann mansion in LA.

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Unseen sides of Egypt https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/14/unseen-sides-of-egypt/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/14/unseen-sides-of-egypt/#respond Thu, 14 Jun 2018 13:00:35 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=662806 Top pictures posted on Instagram by amateur photographers in Ramadan

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Photography has always been a form of stating reality. It is the window through which people can look into the lives of others and the portrait that displays their daily life events.

While media portals are filled with pictures taken by famous photographers, many unknown talents use tools as simple as their mobile cameras to develop their passion for photography. Those, who have not found a platform on which to publish their photos seek to establish their own outlet by publishing these pictures on their social media accounts.

In an attempt to support young talent seeking a platform, Daily News Egypt publishes pictures taken by citizens displaying their daily activities.

These pictures are the best pictures posted to Instagram thoughout the holy month of Ramadan with the hashtag #DailyNewsEgypt. Each one of them reflects a unique side of Egypt—not mentioned in international media outlets—but that can be seen by the people actually living in the country.

Every month, the best pictures with the hashtag #DailyNewsEgypt will be reposted on the newspaper’s official account and published in the printed edition.

Daily News Egypt’s editorial team found that the published pictures represent the work of extremely talented young photographers. Moreover, they capture moments of pure beauty people rarely stop to enjoy amid the hurry of their daily routine.

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Hints of Arab culture abound in Portugal’s Algarve https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/13/hints-of-arab-culture-abound-in-portugals-algarve/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/13/hints-of-arab-culture-abound-in-portugals-algarve/#respond Wed, 13 Jun 2018 14:46:37 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=662706 While most people associate Andalusia with Spain, an important stretch of what was once the northernmost part of the Arab World was also located in what is today’s Portugal. Though Arab rule extended even to the north of Portugal past Lisbon (Lisbun to the Arabs), the best remnants of Islamic civilisation in Spain can be seen …

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While most people associate Andalusia with Spain, an important stretch of what was once the northernmost part of the Arab World was also located in what is today’s Portugal. Though Arab rule extended even to the north of Portugal past Lisbon (Lisbun to the Arabs), the best remnants of Islamic civilisation in Spain can be seen on a trip to the remote region of Algarve, one of the most scenic regions of Spain. For tourists looking for a unique Mediterranean culture with echoes of the Arab past, Algarve is not to be missed.

  

The name Algarve is a corruption of the former Arabic name for the region “Al Gharb” (The West). The area is the most Western part of continental Europe. Even today, centuries later, there is plenty that is evocative of Andalusian glory—from Arabic loan words to Portuguese to the culinary touches that can be found in the regional markets.

The region is home to Islamic monuments that date to the middle ages. The region is increasingly embracing this unique historical heritage. The town of Tavira is home to an Islamic museum. Silves, once the Arab capital of the region, has hosted a centre for Portuguese-Arab studies since 2004.

During my trip to the region, I discovered plenty of Arab cultures just under the surface. Regional markets in Algarve include touches of Arab architecture. For example, in their use of domes and arches. The terms for seafood like the Portuguese language itself includes several loan words: savel from shabal and tuna from the Arabic al-tun. The seafood market is often close to the farmers market where many products introduced by the Arab world continue to be sold including apricots, almonds, and carobs.

“In Portugal, we have grown carob for centuries but we don’t make juice out of it, at least we don’t anymore, so this was re-introduced to us,” said Ricardo Melo, the food and beverage manager of the Anantara Vilamoura Algarve resort. “We had a member of our staff from Egypt who helped us come up with this juice.”

The hotel, the most luxurious in the region, is ideally located in the heart of the Algarve, an ideal base to explore the area littered with monuments of past kingdoms. Today, the region is home to royalty of a different kind.  

 

For football fans, Former FC Barcelona great Luis Figo has a restaurant in the town of Vilamoura. Not far away are Roman ruins that sit next to a night club owned by Portuguese football star Cristiano Ronaldo. The club is—almost predictably—named Seven Vilamoura, after Ronaldo’s jersey number. The famed striker loves the region and has a private residence located not all that far from the hotel in a neighbourhood where many of the local buildings still have intricate Arab-influenced chimneys for which the region is famous. 

On a walk through Vilamoura’s old town, it is easy to spot other architectural features more common to the Southern Mediterranean on streets that would not feel out of place in the kasbah’s of Morocco or Algeria. For those who prefer more active holidays, surfing and other beach sports are readily available. The region’s best golf course is also located on the edge of the Anantara Algarve Vilamoura—the Oceânico Victoria Golf designed by Golf legend Arnold Palmer. It hosts the Portuguese Masters.

Not to be missed on any trip to Portugal is the pastel de nata, small custard tarts which are the go-to Portuguese breakfast pastry. The pastel de nata at one of the region’s bakeries, Pastelaria Beira Mar, in Quarteira is the best in the region—if not Portugal.

The day before I left, however, I didn’t have to venture fat from the Anantara Vilamoura Algarve for a taste of the local culture. In the intriguing lobby dominated by a large indoor tree, I enjoyed a fado performance. In this traditional Portuguese style of music, a singer is accompanied by a stringed instrument. From the manner in which the guitar is plucked to the particular use of repetition, some have found in it Arab musical influences. The Portuguese lyrics have just a hint of melancholy—enough to make you long for your next trip to the Algarve. 

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Ramadan in the Comoros https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/13/ramadan-in-the-comoros/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/13/ramadan-in-the-comoros/#respond Wed, 13 Jun 2018 14:44:43 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=662711 The Comoros is a small African-Arab Islamic country consisting of a group of islands in the Strait of Mozambique in the Indian Ocean. The official languages of the Comoros are Comorian, French, and Arabic. Comorian (or Shikomoro) is a Bantu language closely related to Swahili. About 86% of the Comorian population is Muslim. The Arabs …

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The Comoros is a small African-Arab Islamic country consisting of a group of islands in the Strait of Mozambique in the Indian Ocean.

The official languages of the Comoros are Comorian, French, and Arabic. Comorian (or Shikomoro) is a Bantu language closely related to Swahili. About 86% of the Comorian population is Muslim.
The Arabs named it Comoros in the early second century. The name was derived from the Arabic word “qamar” (moon).

With fewer than a million people, the Comoros is one of the least populous countries in the world but is also one of the most densely populated.


Muslims in the Comoros start celebrating Ramadan from the beginning of Shaaban, the month that precedes Ramadan. They restore, paint, and decorate mosques, including changing old lamps with new ones, so that the mosques can be ready to receive worshippers throughout the holy month.


As is customary in the Comoros, the people hold weddings in Shaaban, so that couples can initiate their marriage in the holy month and have its blessings. Also, the elders of the villages gather to settle any personal or family conflicts.


The Muslims in the Comoros fast for 12 and a half hours during Ramadan, which is the shortest fasting period in an Arab country.


One of the special nights in the Comoros is the night of sighting the Ramadan crescent, when the people take to the streets holding torches and head to the coasts where the light of their torches reflects on the water. After the Ramadan crescent is sighted, the people start banging drums, celebrating the start of Ramadan and stay awake until the time of suhoor.


During the month of Ramadan, the Muslims of the Comoros become like one family. Before the fast-breaking meal, iftar, they head to mosques with different types of food. They hold large banquets in front of the mosques and invite the poor to eat with them.


In the month of Ramadan, the government bans casinos and criminalises wearing revealing clothes for women. Anyone who violates those rules is imprisoned or fined.


All mosques in the Comoros hold sermons after the Asr prayer (afternoon prayer) during the holy month to interpret the Quran.


Tharid is a traditional popular Arab dish consumed in the holy month of Ramadan. It is made of pieces of bread in a vegetable or meat broth. Other dishes include taros, potatoes, sambousa, meat, and fish.

As an appetiser, they eat soup with grinned rice and meat. There is also a famous dish called ntrovi ya nazi, which consists of fried or steamed fish with cooked bananas and coconut stew.


At night, after the Tarawih prayers, people gather to listen to sermons. The suhoor meal consists of rice with milk or crab and vegetables, as well as tea.

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Nobel literature scandal deepens as Jean-Claude Arnault is charged with rape https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/12/nobel-literature-scandal-deepens-as-jean-claude-arnault-is-charged-with-rape/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/12/nobel-literature-scandal-deepens-as-jean-claude-arnault-is-charged-with-rape/#respond Tue, 12 Jun 2018 14:42:00 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=662640 The post Nobel literature scandal deepens as Jean-Claude Arnault is charged with rape appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

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A Swedish state prosecutor has brought two charges of rape against the man at the center of a scandal that has forced the Swedish Academy to cancel the award of the Nobel Prize for literature in 2018.Well-known photographer Jean-Claude Arnault is now facing charges of rape, Swedish prosecutors announced on Tuesday, over six months after 18 women publicly accused him of harassing or raping them in Sweden’s reputable Dagens Nyheter newspaper.

The charges are the result of a preliminary investigation into the allegations against Arnault, who is married to the poet Katarina Frostenson, a member of the Swedish Academy that manages the Nobel Prize in Literature.

District prosecutor Christina Voigt said on Tuesday that Arnault had been charged with two counts of rape against a woman in Stockholm in 2011.

The woman’s attorney, Elisabeth Massi Fritz, told the dpa German news agency in a statement that her client was “relieved and satisfied” with the decision to press charges.

“My assessment is that evidence is robust,” Voigt said in a statement.

Allegations denied

The 71-year-old Arnault denies these charges, as well as separate claims that he leaked the names of Nobel prize-winners ahead of the official announcement.

“He maintains that he is completely innocent of the allegations,” Bjorn Hurtig, Arnault’s lawyer, told Reuters on Tuesday.

“I do not share the prosecutor’s view that the evidence is robust. Accounts differ, there is no technical evidence, there are no direct witness accounts and the events are a long time in the past.”

Read more: Opinion: Literature Nobel Prize delay gives Swedish Academy time to think

Prosecutors closed another preliminary investigation into other abuse allegations against Arnault made in March due to insufficient evidence and expiration of the statute of limitations.

In addition to harassment and rape accusations, Swedish media also claimed Arnault bullied his victims into silence by threatening to use his contacts with the Academy and other influential people to “blacklist” them.

The scandal prompted eight academics to de facto resign from the Swedish Academy, a post that had previously been awarded for life. Faced with the outcry further fueled by the #MeToo movement, the committee decided to postpone awarding the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2018, announcing it would be awarding two in 2019 instead, as it needed time to restore public trust.

The academy is in recess until September, but at present only 10 of the 18 members are active, while four seats are vacant following recent resignations in the wake of the scandal.

sb/eg (dpa, Reuters)

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Croation author Ivana Sajko wins International Literature Award https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/12/croation-author-ivana-sajko-wins-international-literature-award/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/12/croation-author-ivana-sajko-wins-international-literature-award/#respond Tue, 12 Jun 2018 13:33:00 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=662673 The post Croation author Ivana Sajko wins International Literature Award appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

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The major literary award for a work of fiction translated into German goes to a Croatian novel. Sajko’s Love Story has been praised for revealing “the power and impotence” of individuals in the globalized age.Having been whittled down to a shortlist of six authors, the 10th edition of the International Literature Prize for international prose translated into German for the first time goes to a Croatian author, Ivana Sajko, for her novel Liebesroman (Love novel), the jury announced on Tuesday.

The story of a young artist couple living with a child in a nation that is coming apart, the novel “is about the power and impotence of the individual in our globalized present,” said the jury. While the male protagonist is intoxicated with his own ideas, she is plagued by existential fears and the unnamed couple soon begin to fall rapidly out of love — the true essence of the book’s title.

“Ivana Sajko’s tells of a world in agony, of how political systems encroach on lives, put people under pressure, and slowly poison the personal,” said the jury of the Croatian-set work, adding that the story could take place anywhere.

The novel was translated by Alida Bremer, a renowned translator of Croatian literature into German who will receive €15,000 ($17,685) for her efforts; the author will get €20,000 ($23,579) for an award that will likely lead to further foreign language translations.

Read more: International Literature Award goes to Fiston Mwanza Mujila’s ‘Tram 83’

Born 1975 in Zagreb, Croatia, Ivana Sajko is not only an author but also writes and directs plays for the theater. The co-editor of the Frakcija art magazine, Sajko is known for her critical and political writing that is firmly anchored in southeastern Europe — even if she lives and works in Berlin.

From the shortlist announced last month, Sajko beat out two English titles, including Eliot Weinberger’s The Ghost of Birds, and The Story of a Brief Marriage by Sri Lankan-based novelist Anuk Arudpragasam.

The award ceremony will take place on June 28 at the Haus der Kulturen der Welt in Berlin.

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Study reveals zar rituals still heavily performed in Upper Egypt https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/12/study-reveals-zar-rituals-still-heavily-performed-in-upper-egypt/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/12/study-reveals-zar-rituals-still-heavily-performed-in-upper-egypt/#respond Tue, 12 Jun 2018 13:00:41 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=662503 Cultural performance attendees seek to rid ‘demon spirits’ invading their souls

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People in Cairo only know about “zar” as a folkloric musical ritual that used to be held in Egypt years ago, the only remaining part of which is through the band Mazaher. However, a recent study revealed that zar is still being heavily performed in several governorates in Upper Egypt, including Luxor and Aswan.

The study, conducted by Luxor Centre for Studies, Development, and Dialogue said that the folkloric ritual that is culturally believed to exorcise “demon spirits” invading humans is still performed on a regular basis in some of Upper Egypt’s villages, using the same methods that used to be utilised hundreds of years ago.

Zar is a traditional ceremony that was first introduced to Egypt in the early 19th century and soon spread into rural areas. Through circles of women dancing to the rhythms of heavy drum beats and chanting calls for the love of God and need of help. The practice is deeply believed to cure abnormal behaviours and symptoms that people have with no known medical reasoning, instead blaming them on evil spirits.

Through a number of ceremonies, held on a regular basis, chickens are slaughtered as a form of sacrifice to God, and the person seeking to be healed is covered with its blood from head to toe. Over the years, the cultural phenomenon began to fade, leaving only a limited number of people still believing in it.

The study revealed that women in the villages studied acknowledged the existence of the practice. However, zar is still held secretly in certain places that are known to them, and women diagnosed with unfamiliar health conditions, especially older ones, attend zars regularly, where its believed that certain performed songs, drums, and chants drive out the dark devils living inside of them.

According to state-run media outlet Al-Ahram, women with unfamiliar illnesses who could not be medically diagnosed or treated head to the women-only gatherings, where they sing, dance to certain known rhythms, and call God by different names, seeking relief and healing.

Some of the attending women were quoted saying, according to Al-Ahram, that the zar rituals they attend are more or less like massive weddings, where hundreds of females all wearing white gowns gather and dance in circles to songs that are only performed at similar events.

The folkloric ritual is usually held near ancient temples, with the female attendees from different villages coming all the way specially to seek treatment.

The ceremonies were described as huge and being prepared for weeks in advance. One of the quoted ladies said that there are two main female bands that hold these events in the area.

Mazaher is currently the only zar band still performing in Cairo. The modernised version of zar, which takes place at Makan cultural centre, is far from the traditional zar still performed in Upper Egypt.

The amended version of zar, currently performed in Cairo, is a mix of cultural, folkloric Sufi chanting of the love of Gods and nature. It does not seek any sort of treatment for the attendees and it is performed as a form of curing spiritual discomfort.

The band has a large fan base who continuously attend their concerts to enjoy the tempo and the lyrics of the songs.

The start of the practice in Egypt was not documented in any of the books studying the case. Books documented that it first entered Egypt from Ethiopia and Sudan.   

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Ramadan in Thailand https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/12/ramadan-in-thailand/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/12/ramadan-in-thailand/#respond Tue, 12 Jun 2018 12:00:01 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=662490 Thailand in located in Southeast Asia and was known as Siam until 11 May 1949. Thai means “free” in the Thai language. Opinions vary on the percentage of Muslims in Thailand, but some say they represent about 5-10% of its total population. Muslims are largely present in Southern Thailand. Their origins date back to the …

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Thailand in located in Southeast Asia and was known as Siam until 11 May 1949. Thai means “free” in the Thai language.

Opinions vary on the percentage of Muslims in Thailand, but some say they represent about 5-10% of its total population.

Muslims are largely present in Southern Thailand. Their origins date back to the early Arab and Indian merchants who travelled there since the 12th century.

These Muslims are Malay and speak the Bahasa language. It is written in Arabic letters.

When Shaaban starts, Muslims there start memorising the Quran in sessions that are held throughout the month up until the final test. When Ramadan starts, those who memorised best are announced and allowed to recite the Quran in mosques throughout Ramadan.

It is not unusual to see an opening of a new mosque in every city and village during Ramadan. Muslims collect money to build the mosques, and some even contribute to building it themselves.

A religious custom in Thailand is carrying those who memorised the Quran on people’s shoulders in happy gatherings to celebrate them. They walk around carrying them to give an example to the rest of the Muslims and encourage them to memorise the Quran as well.

In Ramadan, mosques are lit, and decorations are hung. Even non-Muslims feel like there is a big event occurring and a very sacred occasion to celebrate. Thailand has about 3,494 mosques, including 180 in the capital Bangkok alone. 

When it is time for iftar in Thailand, big drums are beaten. The person who beats these drums is usually referred to as “Bilal”.

In Ramadan, family members gather around the head of the family, whether it is the father, grandfather, or grandmother. Everybody gathers around the table during iftar. Some people have their iftar in mosques as women arrive there carrying different kinds of foods right before the adhan (call to prayer) for Maghrib (sunset). Ramadan is seen as an opportunity for a family to get together and spend nights practicing religious rituals.

Charities in Thailand collect personal donations to hold group iftars in Ramadan and help the needy throughout the month.

On the first day of Ramadan, each family must sacrifice a cattle head in celebration of the holy month. Poorer families sacrifice birds. This is an old Thai tradition that has been practiced for centuries.

Before iftar, women go out in groups and sit in front of one of their homes and have iftar together, while men do not eat the food their wives cooked, but instead eat the food cooked by other men’s wives. Muslims are keen on eating plenty of vegetables and do not consume many sweets. The Muslim Thai community loves a type of cake made of rice and milk and specifically prefer to have it at suhoor. 

Iftar starts with dates (usually imported from Egypt and Saudi Arabia) with milk, some juices, and snacks. Then Muslims perform their prayers and go back to finishing their iftar.

At iftar, Thai tables, like the case in all Muslim countries, are filled with different kinds of foods and sweets, but the most remarkable thing about this month is that no home makes different kinds of foods, but rather make large amounts of the same type and everybody distributes what they make to everybody else so that each table ends up with dozens of types of foods.

Each family is keen on visiting the rest of its members who may have moved away. Some of them stay for a few days at their relatives’ homes.

Before suhoor, young people and children stand outside their houses with fruits as well as carry lanterns made of tree bark and lit with oil, making them look more like torches.

When it is suhoor time, the streets are empty.

People believe that on Lailat Al-Qadr (Night of Power) there are clear universal signs, and that if you see one of those signs and you say a prayer, whatever you ask for will be accepted and God will respond to one of your prayers. 

   

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Prestigious Peace Prize of the German Book Trade goes to Aleida and Jan Assmann https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/12/prestigious-peace-prize-of-the-german-book-trade-goes-to-aleida-and-jan-assmann-2/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/12/prestigious-peace-prize-of-the-german-book-trade-goes-to-aleida-and-jan-assmann-2/#respond Tue, 12 Jun 2018 10:37:00 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=662573 The post Prestigious Peace Prize of the German Book Trade goes to Aleida and Jan Assmann appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

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The German academic duo have been selected for cultural writings that have promoted “sustainable peace and understanding among the peoples of the world.” They will be receiving the award at the Frankfurt book fair.German writers and scholars Aleida and Jan Assmann are the latest recipients of the €25,000 ($29,500) Peace Prize of the German Book Trade, it was announced in Berlin on Tuesday.

A literary and cultural studies scholar, Aleida Assmann “has displayed an unfaltering commitment to investigating the virulent and perennial themes of historical amnesia and memory culture,” said the peace prize jury in a statement. “Time and again, her work has illustrated that an open and honest handling of the past is an essential precondition for peaceful coexistence.”

A recent publication in her large and celebrated body of work is the 2016 title, Shadows of Trauma. Memory and Politics of Postwar Identity.

Jan Assman, Aleida’s husband, is meanwhile an Egyptologist and cultural studies scholar who has “launched international debates on fundamental questions relating to the cultural and religious conflicts of our time,” the jury said of works including his seminal 1997 publication, Moses the Egyptian: The Memory of Egypt in Western Monotheism.

“His extensive scientific work has examined the relationship between religion and violence, the genesis of intolerance and the claim to absolute truth, all of which have made an indispensable contribution to our understanding of the willingness and capacity for peace held by religions in today’s global society,” the jury statement added.

The jury further commented on the couple’s “exhilarating and mutually enhancing unity,” throughout their scholarly collaborations, which was also recognized last year when Aleida and Jan Assmann together won the 2017 Balzan Prize for Collective Memory for their “shared, inter- and transdisciplinary elaboration of the concept of cultural memory.” Other prizes the couple have won in unison include the 2017 Karl Jaspers Prize.

Read more: Nobel Prize in literature will not be awarded in 2018: Swedish Academy

‘Peace, humanity and understanding’

The German Publishers and Booksellers Association has gifted the Peace Prize — which is comprised entirely of donations from booksellers and publishers — annually to those who uphold the German book trade’s commitment “to peace, humanity and understanding among all peoples and nations of the world,” while the winners “are chosen without any reference to their national, racial or religious background.”

In 2017, Canadian author Margaret Atwood, known for novels including the dystopian classic The Handmaid’s Tale, now a major TV series, was awarded the prize for her “political intuition and clairvoyance when it comes to dangerous underlying trends and currents.”

The 2016 recipient of the prestigious prize was German journalist and author Carolin Emcke, who has written and reported widely from war zones and crisis regions.

The 2018 award ceremony will take place on Sunday, October 14, 2018, the final day of the Frankfurt Book Fair, at the Church of St. Paul in Frankfurt am Main — the site where the Frankfurt National Assembly was formed in 1848 at the height of the democratic revolutions.

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11 of our favorite football films https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/12/11-of-our-favorite-football-films/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/12/11-of-our-favorite-football-films/#respond Tue, 12 Jun 2018 08:49:00 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=662583 The post 11 of our favorite football films appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

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Hooligans and Iranian women heading to the stadium, Maradona and Pelé showcasing their skills: To get in the mood ahead of the 2018 FIFA World Cup, here are 11 of our favorite soccer movies.On june 14, Russia will kick off the 2018 World Cup by facing Saudi Arabia during the first match of the football competition. Meanwhile, you can get into the spirit by watching some of the best soccer movies ever made.

The Goalie’s Anxiety at the Penalty Kick, by Wim Wenders (Germany, 1971) is a rather spartan film about the last man on the field. While Wenders has described the movie as his debut, it also marked his breakthrough. The story itself is quite sad: After having been thrown out as a result of a foul, a goalkeeper wanders around Vienna, where he ends up committing a murder. Adapted from the novel with the same title by Peter Handke, who also co-wrote the script, the film strikes viewers with its calmness and laconism — qualities that good goalkeepers should adopt.

Soccer fans and hooligans

There are two particularly tough films about soccer fans that shouldn’t be missed.

Ultra, by Ricky Tognazzi (Italy, 1990), is a drama dealing with hooliganism. The Italian director focused on the ultras of the Rome-based club AS Roma, which give the Juventus Turino fans a severe beating. At the 1991 Berlin International Film Festival, the film was awarded a Silver Bear.

Two years later, Adolf Winkelmann received the German Film Prize for Best Director for his soccer film Nordkurve (Germany, 1993), which takes a critical look at the football scene in Germany’s industrial Ruhr region, including fans and managers, players and their wives.

Light and exhilarating entertainment

In Fimpen, by Bo Widerberg (Sweden, 1973), a little boy stirs up the Swedish national team, and enjoys more success than Zlatan Ibrahimovic has had in France.

And in Gregory’s Girl, by Scotsman Bill Forsyth (Britain, 1981), a teenager is moderately successful at soccer, but also dreams of other things — namely, girls. Soccer and love do not always match up.

The world’s top soccer stars in film

Escape to Victory — or just Victory — by John Huston (USA, 1981, top picture) is set in occupied France during World War II. In a Nazi-run prisoners’ camp, a match is organized between German soldiers, and British and American prisoners of war. While Victory is not exactly a highlight in the brilliant career of American star director John Huston, which other soccer film can pride itself in having soccer legend Pelé among its stars?

In Maradona (France, 2008), eccentric Serbian director Emir Kusturica features Argentinean soccer idol Diego Maradona, a player who could likely single-handedly take on a whole opposing team.

International relations and gender issues through football

Far beyond both Pelé and Maradona, The Other Final, by Johan Kramer (Netherlands/Japan, 2003), is a rather quiet film focusing on two of the lowest ranking national teams in the world: Bhutan and Montserrat. They played against each other on June 30, 2002, the same day Germany played against Brazil during the World cup in Brazil. Bhutan won 4:0. But what certainly counted much more was that the game helped improve relations between the two countries.

Offside, by Jafar Panahi (Iran, 2006), has been banned in Iran. In the film, director Jafar Panahi shows women and girls trying to get into a stadium in order to watch a World Cup football match — which is strictly forbidden due to their sex. Panahi’s film is both lovely and razor-sharp.

Another work featuring Bhutan: The Cup, by Khyentse Norbu, is a Bhutanese-Australian co-production from 1999. Norbu is not only a director, but also a monk, and shows in his film that football and spirituality are compatible with each other. His main protagonist wears a Ronaldo jersey underneath his frock.

In Hothead, by Jean-Jacques Annaud (France, 1979), French actor Patrick Dewaere plays the luckless footballer Francois Perrin. He gets involved in the criminal ploys of a provincial club. But there is a happy end with Perrin shooting two goals, liberating himself from the bonds of the managers.

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2,000-year-old burial complex discovered near Sea of Galilee https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/11/2000-year-old-burial-complex-discovered-near-sea-of-galilee/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/11/2000-year-old-burial-complex-discovered-near-sea-of-galilee/#respond Mon, 11 Jun 2018 13:29:00 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=662447 The post 2,000-year-old burial complex discovered near Sea of Galilee appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

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Israeli construction workers unearthed a cave in Tiberias which was likely a family burial space from Roman times.Construction workers using a digger exposed what appeared to be an ancient burial site some 10 meters (33 feet) underground while working in Tiberias, a city in northern Israel located on the Sea of Galilee, a spokesperson from Israel’s Antiquities Authority confirmed on Monday.

The space is some two meters high and includes an entranceway as well as the central chamber containing more than 10 grave niches. “The cave must have been a burial space for a family living in Tiberias or a neighboring village,” said spokesperson Yair Amitsur, adding that the discovery is “virtually one-of-a-kind” for this area.

The craftsmanship on the limestone is of high quality, she said, with meticulous decoration and engravings in Greek, leading researchers to believe that the family was wealthy. The entranceway is plastered over in color.

The chamber also contains decorated chests of stone and ceramics, in which the bones of the deceased were placed. The grave niches were used multiple times.

According to Israel’s Antiquities Authority, Tiberias was founded 2,000 years ago, in the year 18 A.D., and named after Roman Emerorer Tiberius.

als/eg (dpa, KNA)

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Ramadan in Pakistan https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/11/ramadan-in-pakistan/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/11/ramadan-in-pakistan/#respond Mon, 11 Jun 2018 13:00:20 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=662341 Like millions of other Muslims around the world, people in Pakistan observe the month of Ramadan with traditional fervour and zeal. With millions of Muslims in the country who do not eat from sunrise to sunset, with the exception of those who are exempt for certain reasons, Pakistan is one of the countries where citizens, …

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Like millions of other Muslims around the world, people in Pakistan observe the month of Ramadan with traditional fervour and zeal.

With millions of Muslims in the country who do not eat from sunrise to sunset, with the exception of those who are exempt for certain reasons, Pakistan is one of the countries where citizens, even the exempt ones, are not allowed to eat in public.

Restaurants usually remain closed during the daytime until before the Maghrib (sunset) prayer, except at the places frequented by travellers or sick people, like hotels, train stations, or inter-city bus stops.

Keeping in mind the tenets of Islam, people also demonstrate their generosity by offering free iftars to the needy.

People cherish Ramadan and relish everything about the holy month, from suhoor meals to iftar and from family get-togethers to helping those who are in need.

As for their eating rituals, Pakistani Muslims usually break their fast with dates and fresh drinks before dinner.

The most traditional suhoor, known there as sehri, includes the locally made fine noodles called pheni, while a popular iftar drink includes aromatic flower extract syrups called sharbat.

Ramadan is the month of strengthening social ties among all Muslims. In Pakistan, Ramadan is an occasion when family and friends get together to spend quality time and revive the richest traditions of their culture. Families and friends, who are usually busy with their daily lives and mundane chores, invite each other over for iftar dinners, making it an opportunity for families and friends to socialise and reunite.

Mosques display a festive aura as people illuminate them with decorative lights on walls and minarets. Courtyards of mosques are filled with worshippers who flock for congregational prayers of Ishaa, which are followed by Tarawih and Tahajjud prayers. Religious leaders preach special sermons during the whole month. Recitation of the entire Quran during Tarawih prayers is a ritual at every mosque. During the last 10 days of the holy month, people observe Itekaab, which is a kind of meditation/contemplation and an effort to please God, leaving all mundane chores aside.

Women at home prepare traditional special cuisine such as chicken tikka, kebab, biryani, keema karela, pakora, and fruit salad, to name a few. While mothers are busy making food in their kitchens, young girls remain at the iftar tables to help prepare the food. It gets more festive for the young members of the family to pop into the kitchen and see what is being cooked for them. The most admired dish is pakora, a fried mixture made up of gram lentil flour, potatoes, and onions. Pakora fruit chaats, dates, special rose syrup drink, and channa chaat, a chickpea salad, are popular fast-breaking items at iftar tables. Regular meals at iftar tables include biryani, spicy rice with meat, chicken khorma, a gravy dish, and haleem, a slow-cooked stew of meat and meat balls. people also feast on food brought from street stalls. Before the Maghrib prayer, Mosque’s courtyards are filled with people who have come to pray and break their fast. Communal meals are served to feed the hungry and poor families of the locality.

During fasting, most restaurants remain closed and are reopened at iftar time. However, businesses function as normal. Opening and closing hours of business and offices are adjusted accordingly. For foreigners, hotels have special arrangements and food is available for them at all times. Shops are usually remained open until late in the night. Drummers roam streets and bang their instruments to announce the pre-dawn meal, called sehri. Famous pre-dawn meals include paratha, yoghurt, vermicelli, and lassi, a dairy drink.

Ramadan brings special joy for children who join their families in observing fasting for the first time. Their success becomes a source of pride for their parents. On the last night of Ramadan, a special tradition of get-togethers happens, called Chaand Raat, which means night of the moon sighting. After the final iftar, women and girls flock to the local markets to buy colourful bangles and paint their hands and feet with henna designs.

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New "Loreley" promotes iconic World Heritage on the Rhine https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/11/new-loreley-promotes-iconic-world-heritage-on-the-rhine/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/11/new-loreley-promotes-iconic-world-heritage-on-the-rhine/#respond Mon, 11 Jun 2018 10:51:00 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=662455 The post New "Loreley" promotes iconic World Heritage on the Rhine appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

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The romantic Rhine rock Loreley in the Upper Middle Rhine Valley has a new representative: Tasmin Sophie Fetz (19) thus realizes a childhood dream according to her own statement.As a child, her nickname was Loreley, said the future chemical laboratory assistant from Dörscheid. On the rock plateau high above St. Goarshausen, the epitome of Rhine romanticism and a hotspot of day tourism, she was presented to the press and public as the 17th Loreley and ambassador of the legendary Upper Middle Rhine Valley World Heritage Site. Her predecessor Theresa Lambrich had given up the title after three years.

According to Loreley Tourism, the Loreley’s job is comparable to that of a wine queen. There are about 50 assignments per year. Applicants should be “flexible in time, mobile and of course blonde”. Good knowledge of the region, sociability, charm and quick-wittedness are important.

The mermaid of the same name plays a central role in historical Loreley statements. Heinrich Heine had them comb their golden hair in a poem and twist the heads of sailors so that they ran against reefs.

is/ks (dpa)

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Ramadan in Morocco https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/10/ramadan-in-morocco/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/10/ramadan-in-morocco/#respond Sun, 10 Jun 2018 11:00:37 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=662196 “Awasher Mubaraka” (happy first 10 days of Ramadan) is a greeting usually said by the people of Morocco during the first days of Ramadan or at the beginning of any religious occasion. By these words, the Moroccans congratulate each other on the beginning of Ramadan. The Moroccans receive the month of “obedience” with cannons shooting …

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“Awasher Mubaraka” (happy first 10 days of Ramadan) is a greeting usually said by the people of Morocco during the first days of Ramadan or at the beginning of any religious occasion.

By these words, the Moroccans congratulate each other on the beginning of Ramadan. The Moroccans receive the month of “obedience” with cannons shooting and women’s ululation (high-pitched tongue trill). At the beginning of the holy month, the Moroccan women prepare delicious sweets, and families flock to the main streets of Moroccan cities where celebrations start after the Tarawih prayers and continue until dawn.
They decorate streets and houses to look their best. Moroccans are keen to perform prayers in mosques, especially Tarawih, as mosques always become crowded with worshippers during the holy month. Mosques prepare schedules of activities that last from dawn until late at night. They organise sermons after the Zuhr (noon) prayer, while the time following the Asr (late afternoon) prayer is devoted to Quran recitation in large groups.
There is a famous habit in Morocco before Ramadan, as they choose the imams who will lead the prayers in major mosques in the country during the holy month. Hassan II Mosque, located in Casablanca, is the largest mosque in Morocco and the second largest in Africa. People from all regions flock to Hassan II Mosque to perform Tarawih prayers. Omar Al-Kazabri, a famous imam, usually leads the prayers at Hassan II Mosque. He was ranked among the 50 most influential Moroccan figures.
There is a common tradition in Morocco called the “Ramadan Hassaniyah sermons”. It was initiated by the late King of Morocco Hassan II. It is a series of sermons delivered before the king by the most important religious men and preachers in the world. Sitting King Mohammed VI continues to follow the same tradition of Hassaniyah sermons, which are currently held at the Royal Palace or at Hassan II Mosque.
In Morocco, the month of Ramadan allows an opportunity for families to meet and exchange social visits. Married members of the same families meet at the family home, or what they call the “Big House” on Fridays in Ramadan. There is another beautiful tradition in Ramadan, when parents celebrate the first fasting for their children. They prepare a special iftar (fast-breaking meal), consisting of delicious Moroccan dishes, besides milk, dates, and dry fruits.
Moroccans celebrate the 15th night of Ramadan by reciting Quran in mosques and women prepare couscous dishes or desserts to distribute among the poor and worshippers in mosques.
Another Ramadan custom in Morocco is the celebration of Laylat Al-Qadr (Night of Power) which is usually observed by the Moroccans on the 26th night of the holy month. On that occasion, the Moroccans wear traditional costumes and organise horse parades.
Moroccan cuisine is one of the most famous in the world. They start their iftar meal by eating dates and drinking milk. After the Maghrib (sunset) prayer, they eat harira, a traditional soup always served as a starter during Ramadan. The main dishes are served after Taraweh prayer, such as tajine and couscous. Morocco is known for its dates, especially “medjool” dates, which are very expensive.

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Ramadan in Philippines https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/07/ramadan-in-philippines/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/07/ramadan-in-philippines/#respond Thu, 07 Jun 2018 09:00:29 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=661915 The Philippines is located in the Far East in the Pacific Ocean. The archipelago consists of 7,000 islands. Each has mountains, plains, and forests, in addition to the world’s largest coasts, with a large number of lakes, rivers, springs, and streams. Filipino Muslims are called Moro. It is the name the Spanish gave to the …

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The Philippines is located in the Far East in the Pacific Ocean. The archipelago consists of 7,000 islands. Each has mountains, plains, and forests, in addition to the world’s largest coasts, with a large number of lakes, rivers, springs, and streams.

Filipino Muslims are called Moro. It is the name the Spanish gave to the Muslims of the Philippines, as the first people to resist the Spanish were the Muslims of Morocco, so the name stuck. When the Spanish entered southern Philippines, the saw the same resistance from residents there, hence, they were called Moro.

Currently, Muslims in the Philippines constitute 10% of the population.

Muslims there eagerly await Ramadan as an opportunity to emphasise their Islamic identity and maintain it. Given the large number of the Muslims of the Philippines of Arab origin, the traditions of Ramadan in the Philippines are greatly affected by their Arab roots.

Some of these traditions include decorations and lightings in mosques, as well as performing Tarawih prayers.

Muslims there seek to make mosques a place of meeting other Muslims and offering aid to the needy. The rich also host the poor at their tables, seeing everyone as brothers in Islam. The imams of mosques work to collect the Zakat (alms) and distributing it among the poor.

Masjid Dimaukom is one of the most important mosques for the Muslims of the Philippines in Ramadan, as they gather and worship there. Children also sit in Quran sessions to read the Quran together.

As for iftar in the Philippines, it starts with having the favourite beverage which consists of bananas, sugar, and coconut milk, then curry, which is made of meat and spices. Afterwards, they have the “si-yuan-suan” dish, which is made of either fish or meat. Then there are some sweets that look like qatayef and apricot juice.

Filipino food is the aggregate of great seafood and food collected from crops and forests, in addition to the effect of other cuisines coming from China, Spain, Mexico, the US, and other countries.

There are many famous local dishes prepared for iftar in the Philippines, such as a rice dish named “pagas” or “cornig”. One of the most famous fish dishes is made of cooked fish and soup. Another includes fried fish. As for the favourite fish dish, it is known as “tilavia”. The Filipinos also like having a sweet dish named “doodle”, and another named “tiatag” and “tamarkotsi”.

Once iftar is over, Muslims rush to mosques to perform the Isha prayers. Afterwards, recital sessions are held, concluded with Tarawih prayers.

As for children, they go out after iftar wearing colourful clothes and carrying Ramadan lanterns, singing songs, and forming teams. Each team receives worshippers with chants and songs in the nearest mosques.

They then roam near the houses close to mosques and remain that way until suhoor, when they wake people up to have their suhoor.

In most cases, the food you see on iftar tables is the same you see at suhoor tables, with some sweets looking like Egyptian qatayef, known as “ayam”. They also drink lemon juice and apricot juice. Some other famous foods at suhoor include jah, paulo, and custard, which is made of flour, cream, sugar, and eggs.

The Filipinos are known to visit one another during Ramadan. Poorer families spend the entire month moving around from a table to another at the houses of their rich neighbours. Then the rich collect the charity of Ramadan and distribute it among these families.

Then the Sheikh of the mosque distributes these funds whether in a city or a village based on the needs of the recipients.

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Ramadan in Ivory Coast https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/06/ramadan-in-ivory-coast/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/06/ramadan-in-ivory-coast/#respond Wed, 06 Jun 2018 13:00:39 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=661794 Ivory Coast, also known as Côte d’Ivoire, is located on the Atlantic coast in West Africa. It is famous for ivory, cocoa, and elephants. Its capital since 1983 has been Yamoussoukro, while Abidjan was the capital before that since 1933, and is still its economic capital. Ivory Coast was named as such because of the …

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Ivory Coast, also known as Côte d’Ivoire, is located on the Atlantic coast in West Africa. It is famous for ivory, cocoa, and elephants. Its capital since 1983 has been Yamoussoukro, while Abidjan was the capital before that since 1933, and is still its economic capital.

Ivory Coast was named as such because of the ivory trade on the coast, as ivory was displayed on the coast to be sold to marine sailors in the Atlantic Ocean.

The climate in Ivory Coast sees only two seasons, which are summer and spring, with high humidity. Muslims make up 40% of the population.

Each West African country has a different name for Ramadan.

In Ivory Coast, the holy month is called “sune kalou,” which means the month of fasting.

As Ramadan approaches, religious lectures and preaching start in mosques in order to educate people on the fiqh (Islamic jurisprudence) of fasting. The Supreme Council of Imams in Ivory Coast announces the so-called “Zakat call” for the rich. Through these programmes, mosque leaders are asked to collect financial donations or food, such as rice, sugar, and milk, in order to distribute them in populous areas.

Muslims prepare to receive Ramadan starting in Shaaban, the Islamic month preceding it, as they prepare mosques and prayer rugs. They also light up lamps, clean walls and floors, and burn incense.

One of the most common rituals in Ramadan in Ivory Coast is young people marrying in late Shaaban so that they can spend the month with their wives. As a result, many wedding venues are fully booked in Shaaban.

On 29 Shaaban, the Supreme Council of Imams meets at the grand mosque in the suburb of Cocody in the economic capital Abidjan in order to observe the crescent to announce the start of Ramadan in the country.

In villages, people come out carrying torches, heading to coasts and neighboring villages, beating on drums, and announcing the start of Ramadan. They also beat the drums during suhoor time to wake people up for the pre-fasting meal.

One of the most famous Egyptian clerics in Ivory Coast is Sheikh Abdulbasit Abdulsamad, as mosques play recordings of his voice reciting the Quran before the Magrhib (sunset) prayer.

In Ramadan, the people of Ivory Coast become one family that is brought together for Maghrib prayers in mosques. Afterwards, they start having their iftar.

Iftar is different in Ivory Coast from any other African country, as no one has their iftar at home. Families cook their food and take it to another poor family in order for everyone to have iftar together.

Mostly, iftar is a light meal that varies from an area to another. The dishes “madid”, “tharid”, and soup remain some of the most important foods in Ramadan in Ivory Coast.

The most famous food in Ramadan there is known as “mumi”. It is bread baked in a very distinct way, made of barley, and eaten with an oil from the Ivory Coast. The most famous drinks are hibiscus, ginger, “king’s brain”, and “dajih”, which is a local powder mixed with milk, flour and sugar.

For suhoor, rice, meat, fruits, and citrus are very popular. As for drinks, ginger is the most famous drink and is considered a main one, alongside pineapple, apple, tangerine, and various vegetables. Additionally, people in Ivory Coast love tea and are keen on having it during their suhoor meal.

After having their iftar, worshippers prepare to go to mosques to perform their Isha and Tarawih prayers. Streets become crowded with worshippers, and afterwards, people gather in circles to listen to each other and attend religious lectures.

Lailat Al-Qadr is of great importance there, especially after the people of the country got rid of some bad habits, such as girls going out to perform popular dances known as “korubi” while wearing very little clothing.

However, popular celebrations are still held, and after Tarawih, suhoor begins. Children walk around knocking on people’s doors to be given gifts and money.

On the last night of Ramadan, Muslims have an official holiday and prepare large meals. Tribes gather around to celebrate the ability God granted them to fast in Ramadan.

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Swimming in sewage: Mallorca and the refuse https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/06/swimming-in-sewage-mallorca-and-the-refuse/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/06/swimming-in-sewage-mallorca-and-the-refuse/#respond Wed, 06 Jun 2018 12:07:00 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=661869 The post Swimming in sewage: Mallorca and the refuse appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

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The holiday season on Mallorca is on its way. Families from around Europe are looking forward to seaside fun. But there are places where swimming is inadvisable. We find waste and discarded needles.Mallorca is closely associated with white beaches, blue bays and summer swimming. That may hold true in many places, but around Palma, the island’s capital, looks are deceptive – extremely so. Instead of unadulterated holiday enjoyment, under the surface here lurks murky wastewater containing fecal sludge.

“When it rains, the public utilities open the sluices and release untreated sewage straight into the sea,” says Aina Barceló from Portixol, a popular subarb of Palma. “There are bans on that sort of thing in Europe. A private company or private individual would be held liable. Here it just happens.”

Barceló no longer lets her young daughter go into the water here. Instead she travels almost an hour to the beach at a nature reserve. “The water pollution isn’t recognizable at first sight, and in the off-season nobody notices it. In the high season a red flag is raised, but very few beachgoers know why,” continues the Mallorcan woman angrily.

Mallorca’s long-standing sewage problem

However, the Balearic island’s sewage treatment plants are outdated and overextended. They have long been unable to cope with the burden created by the population and massive numbers of tourists. Neus Truyol heads Palma’s municipal water and sewage treatment company. She admits the city has a problem.

“Every time it rains, the sewage treatment plants are overstretched. They can’t absorb all the rainwater, so it mixes with household wastewater,” she explains, saying that the amount that does arrive at the treatment plant is so great that some of the sewage is released unfiltered into the sea.

Many blame the previous conservative regime, which they say did absolutely nothing for years. Early this year, the current left-wing coalition consisting of the Socialist Party PSOE and the local group Més per Mallorca at least managed to get the responsible environment ministry in Madrid to agree to the construction of a new sewage treatment plant. But that will take years – and is a mere drop in the bucket.

The fight against refuse

There were once times when the sea and beaches were still clean. Aina Barcelò grew up in Portixol and remembers waving meadows of sea grass, seahorses and sea urchins in the water. She has had enough of all the refuse and pollution, so she has linked up with conservationists in order to play an active role herself.

Her friend Alice Manson from the environmental organization “Ondine” wants to help and educate people. In school programs, she tries to raise children’s awareness of the problem. In a clean-up project on a section of beach limited to 50 meters in El Arenal, the pupils found 722 microplastic particles and 700 larger pieces of plastic, as well as countless cigarette butts, cotton buds, bottles, bags, toys and discarded sanitary products.

Neus Truyol argues that not all the refuse on Mallorca comes from Mallorca: “Much more is washed up from other countries.” She says the waste comes from ships or from the north African coast, which can be seen from the Arabic writing on it.

The diving organization “Mallorca Blue” counters that she is shirking her responsibility with such assertions. It says a three-month field study has shown that the refuse comes mainly from Mallorca and is washed back onto the beaches by the sea.

A risk to the sea and humans

Environmental activist Alice Manson walks along the beach at Portixol looking downward. Her eyes scan the piles of rubbish. Within a few minutes she has found two insulin syringes in the sand, one of them unsealed and with its needle bent upwards. “Anyone walking barefoot in the sand could have stepped on it,” she says, shaking her head, and calls for both locals and tourists to take responsibility at long last. “It’s not just the job of the sewage treatment system to filter out this refuse. More than anything, it’s up to us to avoid creating it.”

Shelina Marks (dpa)

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German international schools aim to promote language, society and culture https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/06/german-international-schools-aim-to-promote-language-society-and-culture/ https://dailynewsegypt.com/2018/06/06/german-international-schools-aim-to-promote-language-society-and-culture/#respond Wed, 06 Jun 2018 10:20:00 +0000 https://www.dailynewsegypt.com/?p=661881 The post German international schools aim to promote language, society and culture appeared first on Daily News Egypt.

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Digitization and high-quality education are top of the agenda at this week’s World Congress of German Schools Abroad in Berlin. In addition to experts and politicians, alumni will also be taking part for the first time.From Abu Dhabi to Accra, from Boston to Bogota — the network of German international schools spans the world. But how can this network of 140 schools be strengthened, and how can cooperation between the schools be improved? These are the questions up for discussion at the World Congress of German Schools Abroad, taking place in Berlin from June 6-9.

In previous years, the gathering — which takes place every four years — has been held in Mexico City, Cape Town, Shanghai and, of course, Berlin. This year, it’s back in the German capital for the second time.

Guests at the event, organized by Germany’s Foreign Office, the International Association of German Schools Abroad (WDA) and the Central Agency for Schools Abroad (ZfA), will include Foreign Minister Heiko Maas, as well as representatives of German business, culture and education sectors. For the first time, alumni from several German international schools will also be in attendance.

The festivities will open with a performance by the Humboldt Big Band, from the Deutsche Schule Alexander von Humboldt in Lima, Peru. Later, discussions and workshops will debate various topics: To what extent do schools abroad contribute to schools in Germany? How can educational standards be improved, for example in digitization? How can global cooperation between schools, universities and the economy be strengthened?

Another central topic: the expansion of international sponsorships for the network of German international schools, a goal defined by Germany’s new governing coalition that is to be put in place during this legislative period.

Read more: Education and digitization: Germany should invest in teaching before tech

Career fair for alumni

An important participant is PASCH (“Schools: Partners for the Future”), an initiative of the Foreign Office that is celebrating its 10th anniversary. PASCH was launched by the former foreign minister, now president, Frank-Walter Steinmeier during his first term in office in 2008.

Under the slogan “gemeinsam. lernen. weltweit” (“together. learning. worldwide”), the network of some 2,000 schools and 600,000 students aims to raise interest in the German language, society and culture, and enable young people to build up long-term connections to Germany.

At this week’s congress in Berlin, PASCH is also organizing a career fair for alumni, supported by the ZfD, the Goethe Institute, the German Academic Exchange Service and the Pedagogical Exchange Service (PAD) of the Secretariat of the Conference of Ministers of Culture.

The aim of this week’s congress is to make the potential of German international schools more visible, both at home and abroad. In the era of migration, digitization and international cooperation, the congress also wants to emphasize the significance of culture and international communication while producing “new and future-oriented incentives for networking and international exchange.”

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