Photo : Amman, Jordan © Hisham Zayadnh, Unsplash

Webinar “Rethinking the Nationhood in the Middle East: Jordan as a case study” - Fifth Session

Webinar supported by Institut Sociétés en Mutation en Méditerranée (SoMuM), within the framework of the Najor@Mo project, "Repenser le national au Moyen-Orient : la Jordanie comme cas d’étude". Organizers: Taher Labadi, Ifpo, Simon Mangon, Mesopolhis, Norig Neveu, Iremam.

Tuesday 17th of May, 3.00-5.00 p.m (CET), online. Zoom Link / ID de réunion : 879 3292 6070 / Code secret : 198370 

“Reading, Writing, and Drawing the Nation: Cultural Production and Society in Jordan” 

This session aims to open a dialogue with two prominent cultural producers about their experiences navigating the media, arts, and literary landscapes of Jordan. While political and social theorists from Benedict Anderson to Partha Chatterjee have underscored cultural production’s centrality in crafting the nation-state, this session aims to examine and interrogate what this process looks like among writers, readers, and artists today in Jordan. Thus, this session asks: What role do books, newspapers, and the arts play in reinforcing—or, alternatively, foreclosing—collective social formations and modes of belonging? How are socioeconomic, professional, and cultural shifts shaping the trajectories and societal influence of cultural producers? In sum, what sort of work is cultural production, circulation, and consumption carrying out during the current moment in Jordan? 

Emad Hajjaj is a cartoonist who has worked with the daily periodical Al-Raʿi alongside other publications in Jordan and the Arab world more broadly. Widely known for his character Abu Mahjoob, Hajjaj has received numerous awards for his ability to portray—both creatively and incisively—everyday socioeconomic, cultural, and political dynamics.  

Omar Zakaria is an Amman-based novelist, creative non-fiction writer, and voice-over actor. He regularly writes for the Arabic-language periodicals Romman Magazine, Al Mutalammes Magazine, Boring Books Magazine, and Fusha Magazine. In 2021, he published the novel Al-Qurtubi: Awakened in Alexandria.  

Ismael Gil, University of Marburg.
Tariq Adely, George Washington University.
Pierre Delanghe, IEP Aix-en-Provence.
Inès Delpuech, INALCO/ENS Ulm, Paris.

Learn more about the seminar and previous sessions