The Handwritten Heritage of South Africa’s Kitabs

The Handwritten Heritage of South Africa’s Kitabs

One heirloom connects Muslim families of Cape Town to heritage more than any other: a kitab. Historians and linguists value them, too, as some preserve the first written form of the Afrikaans language, which was in Arabic script.

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A Crude History

A Crude History

In the oblique and often provocative ways of contemporary art, the 17-artist exhibition “Crude” probes the roles of oil in cultures and societies of the Middle East through the eyes of artists of the region. It is “art rooted in the Gulf, yet addressing universal ideas,” says Antonia Carver, director of the new Jameel Arts Centre in Dubai, which in November inaugurated its galleries with the show.
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Montpellier’s Multicultural Medicine

Montpellier’s Multicultural Medicine

Founded in the 10th century in southern France, Montpellier grew on commerce and knowledge. In the 12th century, Christian, Muslim and Jewish scholars opened what is today Europe’s oldest continuous school of medicine.
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Modernism Awakening

Modernism Awakening

The Modernist movement expressed postcolonial aspirations, elevated traditional cultures and redefined identities from Morocco to Egypt, Sudan, Iraq, the Levant, the Gulf and more. As Arab Modernist paintings command rising prices at art auctions, curators and historians are paying increasing attention to its diverse and dynamic origins.
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Women Behind the Lens: The Middle East's First Female Photographers

Women Behind the Lens: The Middle East's First Female Photographers

Some took portraits of women or worked in the labs of family studios. Some worked across the region with employers or family members. A few struck out on their own. None received much notice—until recently. Three historians introduce leading women photographers of the early 20th century in the Middle East.
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Sirens of the Seagrass

Sirens of the Seagrass

Gentle and at times curious, dugongs likely inspired the first tales of mermaids. Once widely hunted, they are now globally protected, but their food—seagrass—is in decline, and from East Africa to the Pacific Islands, conservationists and communities are taking action.
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Flavors: Vegan Lebanese Moussaka

Flavors: Vegan Lebanese Moussaka

Vegan Lebanese Moussaka Recipe

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FirstLook: Baking Naan

FirstLook: Baking Naan

Baking Naan, Mazar-i-Sharif, Afghanistan

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