Articles

Why Do People Loot?
The Case of the Egyptian Revolution
Mennat-Allah El Dorry

The antiquities trade is not a new one; in fact, it is an ancient business. A papyrus survives from the reign of Ramses IX (ca. 1126–1108 BCE) to tell us of a tomb robbery and the prosecution of the robbers involved. Why do people steal what is, in essence, already theirs?

Tahrir Square
Evolution and Revolution
Yasmine El Dorghamy

A walk through the history of a square that made history.

Bath Clogs, Murder and the Tree of Pearls
Caroline Williams

Sharia al-Mu`izz li-Din Allah, or the Qasaba, is the great artery of Fatimid Cairo. Its importance as a ceremonial way lasted for almost nine hundred years, and the variety of monuments, such as Al-Salih Ayyub’s Madrasa-Mausoleum, still clustered along its length show that it was a favourite building site for those who held power.

Pleasure Seekers and Princely Palaces
Looking Back at Ezbekkeyya
Hoda El Kolaly

For over a thousand years, Ezbekkeyya has witnessed people from all walks of life, from princes and noblemen to diplomats, soldiers and prostitutes. It has been a melting pot of cultures, architecture and ideas, and is still worth exploring today.

Delta Blues
A Day at Pi-Ramses and Tanis
Garry Shaw

When Ramses II built his new capital of Pi-Ramses in the northeast Delta, he filled it with luxurious palaces, temples and mansions. As the New Kingdom neared its end, and the local canal dried up, much of the stonework was transported northwards to the new capital city of Tanis. The modern visitor to Tanis will discover a random array of statues, disembodied stone limbs and royal tombs.

Tomb Sonata in Three Military Movements (and Overture)
Aida El Torie

Among the impressive array of works at the Twelfth International Cairo Biennale was one by Egyptian artist Khaled Hafez, a series of darkened rooms decorated with symbolic images, ending in a hyperreal burial chamber. We look at this most involving work of modern art.

Traditional Crafts
A Struggling Industry
Eman Wahby

Traditional Egyptian crafts are in danger of becoming extinct, though with support they could be a major source of revenue and pride for Egypt’s population. This is a look at how the industry operates, and what it needs.

Coptic Art Revealed
Nadja Tomoum

An exhibition of Coptic art, presenting rarely seen objects to spread knowledge and learning about Coptic culture, enthralled audiences at the Amir Taz Palace in Cairo. We present the highlights right here, in case you missed it.

The All-Purpose Egyptian Calendar
Yasmine El Dorghamy

Not only does it keep track of dates, the Egyptian calendar comes with a full weather forecast, historical references, and cute rhyming proverbs.

Eat Like an Egyptian
Mennat-Allah El Dorry

Although food is generally perishable, quite a bit of evidence has survived to show us what the ancient Egyptians ate. Not only do we have brightly coloured tombs and numerous texts, but also ancient examples of plant remains and food.

The Master of Diamonds in al-Hilmiya
Amr S. Talaat

Cairo’s al-Hilmiya neighbourhood has been shaped by extravagant palaces and powerful personalities, which,
although now long gone, still find their echo in the area’s modern street names. None, however, made as
strong an impact as Abbas Pasha’s al-Hilmiya Palace.

The Golden Age of Cairo’s Silver Screens
Eva Dadrian

Cairo’s cinemas were once art deco masterpieces of architecture. Today, these same cinemas are mostly crumbling or already long demolished, but a few can still be enjoyed by those in search of a lost golden age.