In a surreal scene from the 2001 film Vanilla Sky, Tom Cruise runs through a deserted Times Square before screaming in despair. In a satirical version widely shared in Egypt, the square is filled with campaign billboards for President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi. 689 more words
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“Whatever manufactured items there are in the world,” wrote the Ottoman traveller Evliya Çelebi in 1671, “the poor of Cairo get hold of them, set them out and trade in them.” Nearly 350 years later, this tradition lives on in al-Darb al-Ahmar. 227 more words
Amid the historic quarter’s busy streets, a thousand workshops maintain centuries-old craftmaking traditions. These workers’ ancient skills are celebrated in a new exhibition at London’s Royal Geographical Society… 561 more words
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Despite their success, the Fatimids made for odd conquerers. Followers of an esoteric, revelation-centric branch of Islam analogous to modern Sufism, they were among the most tolerant military dictators the world has ever known.