|The text/picture volume opens up unusual glimpses of contemporary Arab art and culture.
The young art scene of Egypt, Palestine, Syria, and Lebanon is presented comprehensively here for the first time in Germany. The Near East, brought into the focus of the worlds political attention by the Israel-Palestine conflict and now again with the events in Iraq, is gaining
international importance with its provocative art production. In their work, writers, filmmakers, musicians, and visual artists reflect the many-faceted situations of life and work in the region. But the book is not interested in a general depiction of the Near East; rather, it seeks to display quite individual positions in words, for example by Elias Khoury, Abbas Beydoun, Al-Mozany, Miral Al-Tahawi, and the exhibition curator Jack Persekian. The authors reflect the simultaneity of tradition and modernity and the tension between the respective national cultures, on the one hand, and assimilation by the West, on the other, and they explore how war shatters societies. A series of artists are introduced in portraits, and curators open up new perspectives on cultural developments.
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