Sunday, September 16, 2007

One more laish

Why are all Kuwaitis presented in our TV shows as these vulgar, hailag, difasha people? Constant portrayal of these vulgarities as the norm, even if meant to criticize such behavior, is promoting a behavioral pattern that is already in the rise here.
Working on my syllabi and other minor preparations for the term, I've been sitting on my *** (see!!! It's already rubbing off on me) for the last 3 hours with the TV on: 2 shows in AlWatan (Al-wazeera & 3ers Al-dam) and 1 in Dubai TV (Al-Kharraz). The result: here I am using *** in my blog. Point well-proven. Now let me move to the next point.

I just finished reading Middlesex, and here's my two-cents:
Middlesex is the story of a boy who was born a girl, or rather, born with his male parts 'tucked in' remaining un-noticed by the family's old doctor until the girl turns 14 and discovers she's a he.
Now aside from the interesting psychological and gender perplexities presented here, the novel presents a new look at Greek Americans, an ethnic category that I have so far escaped in my literature (Aside from the glimpse in the recent, hilarious My Big Fat Greek Wedding). But aside also from the informative nature of a novel that is both cultural and psychological, the author (same author for The Virgin Suicides. ٌٌٌYou might have seen the movie. Coppola's daughter directed it) manages to create a narrator whose voice is really captivating.
If those Kuwaiti shows leave you on the verge of craziness, pick up the book. I promise you similar juice (there's a brother/sister marriage in there to keep your perverted interest peeked :) Anyone here remembers the Flowers in the Attic series?)

Saturday, September 15, 2007

ليشات رمضانية

ليش الصلال مو راضي ياخذ فلوس من بنته عشان دراسة بناته الباقين؟ يعني كرامته أهم من تعليم بناته؟
ليش عالية شعيب قاعدة تمثل؟ ملت من التدريس؟
ليش فيمتو بيتنا وايد حالي؟
ليش آنا ليلحين مو قادرة آضبط برنامج دريم ويفر على الوب سايت مالي؟
ليش فرح ما تحب اللحوم الحمرا؟ شايفة ألايف لما كانت صغيرة؟
ليش الكتب اللي طلبتها للكورس الأول ما وصلت لحد الحين؟
ليش الواحد مرات يحس بغلقة حزة المغرب؟
و أهم ليش فلسفية جننت قلوب العذارى و الغير عذارى: ليش الدياية عبرت الشارع؟

هذي مو فوازير رمضان. هذي ليشات رمضانية تراودني (حلوة هذي تراودني؟) وأنا ناطرة الفطور عشان مشتهية رهش.

وسلامتكم ومبارك عليكم الشهر

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Segregation again...Diwaniya

Al-Onaizi: “men should always come first, then the woman.”

I didn't hear this one myself when I watched the re-run of Dr. Ghabra's Diwaniya yesterday. I wasn't able to stay tuned as Al-Onaizi kept going around in circles, failing to answer questions directly, and swaying away from the main topic (If this was one of the papers my students present, I'd have OFF-POINT written all over the pages)
Did he actually say men should come first? or is this taken out of contest?

School's starting soon, and segregation will again present itself as a hurdle in assigning classes to teachers. I just had to add a boys only class to our schedule to cater for the need of probably 2 or 3 students when I have other classes that hold 10 students over the limit with some still on the waiting list. In a department that is predominantly female, it becomes almost impossible to maintain segregation. Our literature male students are even fewer in number than our linguistics ones which means that many of them have to spend more years in college that they should just to be able to find the classes they need.

As we promote classroom discussions and student interaction in the knowledge-learning process, classes of 2-3 students seem to be a barrier hard to cross. Small classrooms are usually easier to handle in terms of discussions, with everyone given the chance to participate. But 2-3 students is not a classroom. It's private tutoring. And the rules for private tutoring do not hold for classroom discussions that should promote an interactive, debate-based discussion. 2-3 student classrooms means teachers have to resort to lecturing, so we're back to students listening, teachers speaking, exams being proof of the students ability to memorize what the teachers says in class.

So much for liberal/creative thinking.

Sunday, September 09, 2007