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Arts and Democracy

Sing for Democracy? – Alex Wells – ICD Program Director

Mohamed Mounir (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mohamed_Mounir), an Egyptian singer known as “The King” for his wildly popular mix of classical Arabic, Nubian, jazz, reggae and pop music, released a song called “Ezzai” in February of 2011. It was banned in Egypt, but Mounir posted a version on facebook accompanied with powerful images of Tahrir, and it went absolutely viral.

People (http://www.zeit.de/2011/25/Kairo-Adel-Tawil/seite-3) are calling it the song of the revolution.

Have a look at the original video here (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZIKcHIWm4fU) and see what you think. Ostensibly, the lyrics are top-drawer heartbreak material—innocent enough, one would have thought—but Mubarak’s wily bureaucrats looked a bit deeper and found enough metaphorical potency to justify a ban on the song. In the plaintive mourning of a lover forgotten, it’s not hard to hear the anger and disappointment of a people let down by its leaders.

The lyrics are here (http://baysweetwater.com/2011/02/10/english-lyrics-for-ezzai-song-of-the-egyptian-revolution/), composed by Nasr Al Din Nagy.


About icdblogsphereteam

We are the Blogsphere Team of the Institute for Cultural Diplomacy. We are the interactive part of the web resources of ICD. We spread culture and mutual understanding among cultures through blogs.


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The London Art as Cultural Diplomacy ConferenceAugust 21st, 2013


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