Sunday, November 28, 2021
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In 1992, The Washington Post published a favourable review of Dr Bouthaina Shaaban’s book, ‘Both Right and Left Handed; Arab Women Talk About Their Lives’ (first published in 1988). Dr Bouthaina was born in the 1950s and grew up in a village in countryside Homs. When the Washington Post review was published, she had a PhD in English Literature from...
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October 2019 In Syrian cities and towns, it is normal for primary school students to attend a co-educational school and then for students to be streamed into single-sex secondary schools. (This isn't possible in many small regional schools, so high school students in the countryside often attend mixed classes.) Universities generally have mixed classes. Last month, on my visit to Dar...
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https://youtu.be/BKj-X5PuFdU Interview with 16-year-old twins, Sarah and Maya Sarah and Maya Ghassali are 16-year-old twins who migrated from Syria during the civil war in 2012 Melbourne, Australia. They are passionate about helping refugees and in doing so have started their own podcast 'Refugees on air' where they interview refugees about their inspiring stories. Everyday they aim to make positive changes in...
Days full of music and joy I came to Australia with my family in March 2015, so I have been here for two years. We are sorry that we had to come here as refugees, but we feel very lucky to be able to come here.  We are really grateful to the people of Australia for accepting us and...
Interview with Lubna, recorded by Susan Dirgham in 2010 Extract: In regard to women’s issues and the equality of the sexes, what are some of the differences of opinion in Syria? You have a whole range of opinions. For example, men are demanding their rights, like to be equal to the women! They are saying, like, women have more rights than...
What dreams or ambitions did you have in the past?  And now? In the past I had an ambition to become a schoolteacher to participate in preparing a Syrian generation that is aware and cultured. However, my ambition has grown now and I want to become a university professor and a professional tour guide. How do you recognize that someone is...
How do you recognize that someone is Syrian?  Are there any common characteristics? Syrians are distinguished for being kind to everyone, even to strangers. For example, a Syrian would rush to give a helping hand to a blind person to cross the street. Another instance, a Syrian would immediately help an old person carrying heavy things into his/her house. A...

LENA CHAMAMYAN

Lena is an Armenian Syrian singer, composer and musician. Described as a Syrian ambassador spreading the jasmine voice of Damascus, she has performed in Germany, England, Sweden, Turkey, Jordan, Lebanon, and Russia, as well as her home country of Syria. She sings mainly in Arabic and Armenian, but also in Syriac, English, French and Italian. Lena graduated from Damascus University in...
What makes you proud to be Syrian? Sometimes I feel shame when I see the crimes that some Syrians are doing in the name of God, but when I remember how Syria used to be and how the Syrian people are facing this crisis and how they build hope and life from the ashes I feel so proud to be...
Not to be Ignored Below is a transcript of an interview conducted at the end of 2010, when there was no thought of conflict in Syria, and the issues of the day for educated young women related to their ‘liberation’. The questions chosen were a response to the times since Ms Ayaan Hirsi Ali had recently visited Australia, where she...