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Middle East Diasporic

"Sexy Voice": a True Libyan-American Story

Subtitle: 
in which a young immigrant struggles with culture shock in St. Paul
By Sue Narayan


June, 2006. Over a month since Mansur left, and I'm doing my best to help his son. As a favor, I call Sami at least once a week to see how he is doing, and I drive him on errands whenever he asks. I met Mansur and his wife Karima a quarter century ago through a University of Minnesota host family program, and celebrated with them in 1982 when their son, Sami, was born.

American Foreign Policy in Afghanistan in "Crossing Zero"

"AFGHANISTAN: THE WAR, THE PEOPLE"
WITH CO-AUTHORS ELIZABETH GOULD & PAUL FITZGERALD
DISCUSSED AT THE LEVANTINE CULTURAL CENTER
APRIL 7, 2011

Exactly What Role Did Social Media Play in Egypt's Revolution?

Subtitle: 
op-ed by Simon Mainwaring of the forthcoming "We First" book on the social media revolution

By Simon Mainwaring

The January 25th revolution in Egypt was an incredible achievement by its people and a truly inspiring example of the power of peaceful protest. Yet the work towards an effective transition to democratic government within Egypt has just begun. Meanwhile a debate continues to rage in the blogosphere as to the exact role played by social media.

A fusion of Middle Eastern sounds with rock in Twenty7

Subtitle: 
Los Angeles based band Twenty7

Twenty7's new CD PapatyaTwenty7's new CD PapatyaTwenty7 plays a unique blend of rock with Middle Eastern influences. The band formed in 2007 when a group of young and talented musicians met each other through mutual friends in Los Angeles, California. Comprised of members originally from Turkey, Twenty7 adds Middle Eastern flavor to rock, forming a unique style of music with strong rhythms, technical guitar riffs, and powerful vocals. Okan is the free-spirited vocalist and bass guitarist, Murat is the charming guitarist, Volkan is the down-to-earth darbuka percussionist, and Kurt is the perfectionist drummer.

Iraqi Artists Featured in "Exiles" March 11-April 11, 2011

Event Details
Date/Time: 
Mar 15 2011 6:00pm - Apr 11 2011 10:00pm
Price: 
Free to the public.
Where: 
Inside/Outside Gallery, Levantine Cultural Center
5998 W. Pico Blvd.
Los Angeles CA 90035
between La Cienega Blvd. & Fairfax Ave.
street parking or in the CVS lot across the street (till 10 only)
Subtitle: 
Meet artists Paul Batou and Faris Al-Saffar at the Inside/Outside Gallery

"Exiles" exhibition runs March 11-April 11, 2011"Exiles" exhibition runs March 11-April 11, 2011EXILES, a new exhibition featuring two Iraqi artists will open at the Levantine Cultural Center's Inside/Outside Gallery with a reception for the artists on March 11, 2011, 6-10:00 pm, 5998 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles, CA, 90035. Exiles features Paul Batou and Faris Al-Saffar, exiled Iraqis whose art explores life in their native land. The two-man show runs through April 11, 2011.

Turkish novelist presents mystical "Deserts and Mountains"

Event Details
Date/Time: 
Mar 10 2011 7:00pm - 9:00pm
Price: 
Free to the public. Suggested donation $10 or purchase of novel ($16).
Where: 
Levantine Cultural Center
5998 W. Pico Blvd.
Los Angeles CA 90035
Conveniently located between La Cienega Blvd. & Fairfax Ave.
ample street parking or in the CVS underground lot across the street (till 10 pm only)
Subtitle: 
Yilmaz Alimoglu will present his novel for the first time in Southern California
A Sufi travel novelA Sufi travel novelTurkish author Yilmaz Alimoglu will present his novel of philosophy and Sufism, Deserts and Mountains, which has received excellent reviews. Read more.

"Reminiscent of Paolo Coelho's The Alchemist, with a hint of Elizabeth Gilbert's Eat, Pray, Love, Alimoglu's [novel] follows the inner and outer journey of expatriate Turk and Sufi Ali Dogan." —Irene Blinston

Deserts and Mountains follows a determined young man on an emotional, physical and spiritual journey from Canada to Turkey as he experiences the life-changing guidance of his sheikh guide in this philosophical novel.

An expatriate living in Canada, frustrated with his business, career and family, Ali turns to his spiritual guide, a sheikh of the shrine he attends. The sheikh suggests that Ali keep a journal of the entire "real" trip, including a journey back to his childhood home in Turkey. Ali approaches the trip with no fixed agenda, other than to reflect on his life and the outcome of earlier events and choices. Out of this journal is born Deserts and Mountains.

Arava Institute's "Nature Knows No Borders"

Event Details
Date/Time: 
Mar 17 2011 7:00pm - 9:00pm
Price: 
Suggested donation $25 to benefit the Arava Institute
(no one turned away for lack of funds)
Where: 
Levantine Cultural Center
5998 W. Pico Blvd.
Los Angeles CA 90035
conveniently located between La Cienega Blvd. & Fairfax Ave.
ample street parking or across the street in the underground CVS lot (till 10 pm only)
Subtitle: 
Friends of the Arava Institute present how Israelis, Palestinians and Jordanians are working together

Students of the Arava Institute on a field tripStudents of the Arava Institute on a field tripThe Arava Institute for Environmental Studies (AIES) is the premier environmental education and research program in the Middle East, preparing future Arab and Jewish leaders to cooperatively solve the region's environmental challenges together. Located in the heart of the Arava desert, AIES is a unique oasis of environmental education, research, and international cooperation. Visit the Arava web site.

Mark LeVine, Free Tunisia Cultural Jam

Subtitle: 
Middle East historian jumps on plane to Cairo's Tahrir Square

Blog by Ryan Torok, Jewish Journal

The event, a fundraiser for the nonprofit, Free Tunisia, also featured Egyptian and Tunisian speakers, who spoke about their countries histories and their revolutions - propelled by youth determined to oust their longtime autocrat leaders. Levantine Center co-founder Jordan Elgrably, whose recent opinion piece in Al Jazeera says, among other things, that "Israel should be integrated into the mosaic of the Middle East. It is time to end the conflict that began with the belief that Arabs and Jews are historic enemies," helped organize the event.

A Spiritual Journey in Yilmaz Alimoglu's "Deserts and Mountains"

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE [Los Angeles, Feb. 28] Turkish author Yilmaz Alimoglu will present his book, Deserts and Mountains, at the Levantine Cultural Center, March 10, 7:00 pm, 5998 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles, CA, 90035.

Arab Revolutions from the Perspective of Egyptian-American VJ Um Amel

Subtitle: 
Media-Making Madness and Meditations
by Laila Shereen SakrArab revolutions...Arab revolutions...

I have not yet been able to digest the magnitude of what has happened in Tunisia, Egypt, and is happening now Iran, Syria, Yemen, and other Arab countries. As an Egyptian-American VJ and media artist whose work concerns the Arab world, the revolutions of 2011 have deeply impacted me professionally, artistically, and personally. There is something extremely poignant for Egyptians living outside of Egypt at this exact moment in history. Most of us who emigrated from Egypt often did so for the same reasons that incited millions to rise and cause revolutions. Perhaps there is lingering guilt that stays with the emigrant for not having stuck it out--on top of repercussions of Diaspora accumulated over decades. Still, there is no doubt that all Arabs living in and outside of the region have been extremely inspired and mobilized by the collective power of the people in the region. I keep hearing, repeatedly: the time is now.