Aleppo, Syria, Preserves the Past by Enhancing the Present – NYTimes.com. But this quiet plaza is the centerpiece of one of the most far-thinking preservation projects in the Middle East, one that places as much importance on people as it does on the buildings they live in. The project encompasses the rebuilding of crumbling streets and the upgrading of city services, the restoration of hundreds of houses in the historic Old City, plans for a 42-acre park in one of the city’s poorest neighborhoods and the near-decade-long restoration of the Citadel itself, whose massive walls dominate the skyline of Aleppo,…
Muslim Women Gain Higher Profile in U.S. – NYTimes.com. These women have achieved a level of success and visibility unmatched elsewhere. They say they are molded by the freedoms of the United States — indeed, many unabashedly sing its praises — and by the intellectual ferment stirred when American-born and immigrant Muslims mix. I have the great privilege of knowing many of the people interviewed for this article. I have a brief interview on The Takeaway about it as well.
Mecca Development Veers to Kitsch – Critic’s Notebook – NYTimes.com. It is an architectural absurdity. Just south of the Grand Mosque in Mecca, the Muslim world’s holiest site, a kitsch rendition of London’s Big Ben is nearing completion. Called the Royal Mecca Clock Tower, it will be one of the tallest buildings in the world, the centerpiece of a complex that is housing a gargantuan shopping mall, an 800-room hotel and a prayer hall for several thousand people. Its muscular form, an unabashed knockoff of the original, blown up to a grotesque scale, will be decorated with Arabic inscriptions and…
VOA | Muslim-American Rapper Bridges Faith and Music | News | English. Where else but in the heart of New York City could one find a Muslim, American, Irish-Iranian rapper?
Chris Hayes, on the tax cut deal: “It’s the standard bribery model of legislating that has come to characterize Washington in the era of oligarchy: if you want to put food on the table of the unemployed, you must lavishly wine and dine the CEOs and bankers who laid them off.” [From The Era Of Oligarchy]
For God or for Fame? The Making of a Teenage Bomber | Culture | Religion Dispatches. Ironically, while Mohamud lamented how unrepresented he was by American Muslims and Somalis, his arrest has become fodder for speculations about what it tells us about the nature of these communities.
My Take: How real interfaith dialogue works – CNN Belief Blog – CNN.com Blogs. I’ve thought for some time that if more Americans had personal contact, even friendships, with their fellow Americans who are Muslims there might be less mistrust and misunderstanding about the role Islam plays in their lives.
The Deepest Dangers Facing the United States – Newsweek. America’s social harmony has depended at least to some degree on economic growth. It is easier to get along when everyone, more or less, is getting ahead. But when the pie is shrinking, social groups are more likely to turn on each other. America has always been a remarkably classless society—obsessed by status and money, perhaps, but fluid enough so there was never an identifiable social class that was able to keep the rest out.