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Tag: Tunisian
She went through an anthropometric test (September 18 2012) She went through an anthropometric test (September 18 2012)

Nadia Jelassi the Tunisian artist facing a five year prison term on charges of disrupting public order, following her exhibition of controversial art works, has become the focus of a campaign by hundreds of artists throughout Tunisia and abroad according to Hend Hassassi in an article published on Tunisia Live. Hassassi states “When Jelassi was summoned by the investigative judge … she went through an anthropometric test. She recreated her experience by posting a picture of herself holding a ruler by her face on her Facebook account. A support campaign was then launched by other artists inspired by Jelassi’s depiction of the incident. Many Tunisian artists have condemned the lawsuit and consider it an attempt at limiting freedom of expression. …“We are all Nadia. It is unbelievable, we never thought that charges would be brought against an artist for being creative, that’s what we do we express ourselves, we do it through our art. I don’t even get what the crime she is being accused of[…] It is certainly a first. For this to happen after the so-called revolution, it is just shocking, … It is the state that raised the lawsuit, how outrageous is that, this is not a spontaneous accusation someone is pulling the strings, it is certainly political and artists are paying the price“ said Sana Tamzini, artist and director of Belvedere Contemporary Art gallery, praising the support campaign for its intelligence and symbolism.”


Inspired by Hend Hassassi image source Facebook

Pretext to muzzle artists and creativity (July 19th 2012) Pretext to muzzle artists and creativity (July 19th 2012)

Héla Ammar the 43 year old Tunisian photographic Artist a participant in the Printemps des Arts [Springtime Art Festival] has been interviewed by Yasmine Ryan for Aljazeera in regard to the rise of conservative moral and violent religious censorship of her home land’s artists and intellectuals. In the interview Ammar states “A misleading video montage showing a painting has been widely shared online, presenting artists as non-believers. It’s this diffusion of dishonest information and images which has provoked hatred and condemnation from a fringe of society. …The concept of national or sacred values is just a pretext to muzzle artists and creativity. These concepts can be interpreted in many different ways, especially the most restrictive, which will ultimately result in Tunisia having official art and dissident art. This is very serious and echoes dark periods in history… In reality, the artists have been used as scapegoats. This affair has been entirely manufactured to eclipse more serious issues. We are in the middle of a war between several political movements, with the Salafists and other reactionary movements which are pressuring the present government against moderation and appeasement. …What is happening is definitely very serious because the personal details of some artists have been published on extremist [Facebook] pages which have thousands of fans. They are calling for the murder of these artists. My friends are receiving endless phone calls and insulting messages and death threats. We are very worried because we don’t have any protection, and even the cultural ministry, which should be defending us, has abandoned us.”


Inspired by Aljazeera image source Twitter

Larbi Sadiki the Tunisian writer, political scientist and senior lecturer recalls his meeting with Egyptian Aboul Fotouh in 1992 while a fresh doctoral candidate at the Australian National University. The subject of Sadiki’s investigation at the time was notions of democracy in the discourse of four Islamist movements. The Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood (EMB), Tunisia’s Nahda Party (NP), Jordan Islamic Action Front (IAF), and Sudan’s Islamic Front led then by Hassan Al-Turabi. Sadiki states “Of all of the Islamists I met and engaged with in discussion over democracy during that period, coming soon after the Algerian debacle, Aboul Fotouh was amongst the limited number of interlocutors who felt at ease with that concept and the whole notion of good government. Then, the concept was not as yet popular with most Islamists. Not even the creative Rashid Ghannouchi, whom I sat with and interviewed many times for the purpose of my PhD and beyond, had at the time acquired a firm grip on the term. It was largely considered for being a specifically Western concept underpinned by Western values. At the time, ‘democracy’ in Islamist parlance, lacked the scruples and rigour of shura, Islam’s consultative ethos, even though the likes of the innovative Hassan Al-Turabi in Sudan sought a move towards defining a shura-democracy synthesis.”


Inspired by Aljazeera image source Studiahumana

Larbi Sadiki the Tunisian political scientist whose writings focus on the democratization of the Arab world released an article on Aljazeera that discusses the significance of Mohamed Bouazizi self-immolation one year on, that set off a chain of events now known as the ‘Arab Spring’. “The man and the act spawned a hugely unprecedented movement, forever altering the Arab political landscape, delivering the much-vaunted ‘breakthrough’ in the fight against autocracy … The Arab Spring fervour that sprang in Bouazizi’s home town and country has spread further afield in the Arab world, making possible dreams of dignity and freedom which are today palpably catapulting the Arabs into democratic openings. The uprisings and still unfolding revolutions were made by the Arab world’s little peoples. Their greatness, like Bouazizi, lies in their capacity for self-sacrifice in the quest for dignity.”


Inspired by Larbi Sadiki image source

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