Neolithic game boards from Jordan. In some places like Petra they were carved into walls of the city for leisurely play? The early mancala game we know today is likely from this, but no one really knows the rules of the ancient games. But archeologists do know that they were a way for socializing people […]
Construction of Egypt’s first nuclear power plant will begin in the next two to two-and-a-half years. A statement released by a spokesman for the Energy and Electricity Ministry declared that the 4,800 megawatt (MW) capacity plant – to built by Russia – aims to be operational by 2026.
British designer and humanitarian Helen Storey believes that fashion is an excellent vehicle to connect people to difficult subject matters. Last week, she sent a dress crafted from a former refugee tent down the runway at the Jumeirah Carlton Tower hotel in Knightsbridge. It captured everyone’s attention, and put a spotlight on climate change and its human impact.
Fancy some fresh bread, right out of the fire pit? It was fresh…14,400 years ago. Until recently, it was thought that the earliest bread, discovered in the 9,500-year-old settlement of Çatalhöyük, Turkey, was the product of Neolithic grain farming. But charred crumbs discovered in northeast Jordan reveal that Paleolithic hunter-gatherers in this region ate bread […]
English is my primary language, but even if I didn’t speak some Arabic, Greek and French too, I’d still be multilingual. As a dancer, dance educator and choreographer, I have always believed that I speak the universal language. Movement is life. As living beings, we move even before making our presence known to the world. […]
Set a reminder to set back your clocks this weekend, as we welcome back (for the hundredth time) Daylight Savings Time. This biannual tradition, established in 1918 America, sees much of the world get robbed of an hour sleep as clocks spring forward at 1 AM on Sunday, all to give us an extra hour […]
The Jameel Prize 5 will be on exhibit from 28 June through 25 November, 2018 at London’s Victoria and Albert Museum. It’s the international award for contemporary design inspired by Islamic tradition. As befits artworks that are out of this world, let’s quote American astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, who recently tweeted, “Bears repeating: Creativity that satisfies & […]
The Middle East was in the house at this year’s Mobile World Congress (MWC), one of the largest startup gatherings on the planet, showcasing intelligent technologies and human ingenuity that are transforming every business and every process. Sponsored by PC Magazine, and held February 26 through March 1 in Barcelona, MWC pop-up pavilions housed innovations from around the […]
In the wake of the 2016 American presidential election, the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) observed an unusual and muscular increase in online political action by people concerned about conservation and the environment. Especially noteworthy is an uptick in financial support to environmental NGOs by citizens willing to back their beliefs with cash.
Clothing swap and resale businesses allow you to shed formerly favorite clothes and accessories and – in exchange – refill your wardrobe with affordable “new” treasures. They offer an environmentally responsible alternative to dumping old duds into a charity box or trash can. Want to change up your wardrobe without damaging your wallet and the world? Check […]
I’m fresh back from a week in Iceland. Hard to enter a room these days and not have at least one other person claim the same; it’s the touristic destination du jour. A tiny nation where sheep outnumber people is bound to be an environmental nirvana. Go there for the Northern lights, active volcanoes and […]
A major Jordanian artwork showcased at the 2016 Amman Design Week was recently repurposed to provide basic human shelter for people in need. This afterlife was intentionally designed into the piece, an artistic application of “cradle-to-cradle” practices. The project raises awareness about conscious design and the positive impact of handcrafts within local communities.
I just met a pair of young Swedes, newcomers to Amman who were quickly appalled by the piles of plastics lining our city streets. They stitched up simple bags from mesh netting that they take to local markets, insisting on using their lightweight, reusable alternative in place of plastic produce sacks. Until the rest of […]
In two weeks, a team of international athletes will attempt a world first by swimming across the Dead Sea, one of the saltiest bodies of water on earth, at the planet’s lowest point. The sea, which is technically a lake, resonates with deep historical and spiritual significance that partners perfectly with environmental activism. This risky swim […]
New York City’s Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) is hosting an exhibition on refugee shelters to kickstart dialogue on the design challenges caused by humanitarian crises. Entitled “Insecurities: Tracing Displacement and Shelter”, the show looks at emergency housing in contemporary crisis zones. It is the first time a major museum has explored the plight of the […]
Tomatoes are full of lycopene, the cancer-busting carotenoid responsible for the reddish colorations in vegetables and fruits. Red peppers are packed with phytochemicals and beta-carotene, which flood your system with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits. Meet a delicious concoction that combines both in an ancient Middle Eastern recipe with decidedly modern health benefits. Science says the sense […]
France has passed a new law that bans cups, cutlery, plates, and takeaway containers made from plastic. It’s The part of the nation’s Energy Transition for Green Growth Act, which will also carry out a ban on plastic bags in grocery shops and markets beginning in July. The law comes into effect in 2020. French President […]
Three public spaces in downtown Amman have been temporarily re-purposed as platforms to promote contemporary design from Jordan and the wider region. This is Amman Design Week, a first-time consolidation of the kingdom’s artistic capabilities, established and emerging, and the excellent choreography of its exhibits rivals that in any world-class city. Supported by Her Majesty Queen Rania Al […]
Dip a dowdy dress into one of the world’s saltiest lakes and see what happens. Artist Sigalit Landau did, and ended up growing a crystalline gown straight out of Frozen. Take a look at these images. It’s unlikely you can “Let it go”.
Legalization of recreational marijuana in American states is on the upswing, spurring entrepreneurs to devise new ways to use the flowering psychoactive herb as an ingredient in retail food products. California-based chef Christopher Sayegh is taking Arab haute cuisine even higher, cooking up traditional Middle Eastern fare infused with cannabis.
People are often defensive when it comes to headscarves, which have strong links to specific religious and cultural beliefs. Now a Beirut-based architect has designed a headwrap that uses defense as the justification for wearing it: this updated version of the classic Arab keffiyeh (allegedly) deflects bullets! Functional fashion takes a remarkable turn in the hands of […]
Growing crops without soil, otherwise known as hydroponic agriculture, is not a recent innovation. In fact, it can be traced back to ancient times and kingdoms like Babylonia, whose Hanging Gardens were said to have been created and nurtured by use of hydroponics. The modern day Middle East, especially water-deprived countries like Jordan and Syria, has […]
For five years a set of unfinished twin towers have stood watch over Amman, Jordan, construction halted – allegedly crippled by lawsuits. The filthy glass facades soar above a street-level footprint ringed by old hoarding, abandoned building material and trash. The empty skyscrapers stand in silent testimony to both the 2008 world financial crisis and […]
A recent study released by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) concludes that the current drought that began in 1998 in the eastern Mediterranean Levant – which includes Cyprus, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Palestine, Syria, and Turkey – is the region’s worst dry spell since 1100 C.E.
The weeks that girdled Christmas and New Year’s had me living like a fois gras goose, endlessly stuffed with food and drink as my family raced from Jordan to England to the US for clan-centric rituals ranging from a funeral to a birthday, with the usual winter holidays in between. I recently scanned the snapshots, […]