I Want That Arabic T-Shirt

A few days ago I attended the TEDxKRP 2011 conference hosted here at the National University of Singapore. The conference was heavily geared towards social entrepreneurship and featured some really interesting talks by well respected speakers from all over the world.

Needless to say, all the talks were very beneficial and enlightening. However, there was one particular talk that caught my attention. Before I dig into that though, let me first give a brief prelude so that you would understand why I became interested in that particular talk.

If there's one thing you should know about me, then it would probably be my obsession with the Arabic language. I immensely enjoy reading Arabic poetry and literature and I am compelled to admire Arabic's beauty and descriptive power. The way the characters are designed and how they are conjoined leaves a lot of room for very artistic works of calligraphy.

Descriptive power and calligraphy are not the main reasons of my obsession with Arabic, however. The main reason is the strong connection binding Arabic, the language, to Arabs, the people. As fractured and divided the Arab world is today be it on the political, economical or racial level, Arabic is one of the very few common denominators that are left.

If Arabic is one of the very few denominators that portray an Arab's identity, then why is it the case that Arabs try to run away from it? Continue reading “I Want That Arabic T-Shirt” »