Halah Hamrani: The Saudi boxing instructor teaching women to ‘Fight Like a Girl’

Halah Al Hamrani is a Saudi martial arts instructor and owner of the FLAG (Fight Like a Girl) Boxing gym in Jeddah. A pioneer in the emerging Saudi women’s fitness industry, Halah teaches women to challenge themselves and push their limits. Women in Saudi Arabia have typically been discouraged from sports, but as the country starts … Continue reading Halah Hamrani: The Saudi boxing instructor teaching women to ‘Fight Like a Girl’

7 essential resources for Arabic students

Arabic is one of the most difficult languages in the world to learn, but with a little bit of help from these 7 awesome resources you’ll be well on your way in no time. Whether you’re learning Modern Standard Arabic or a dialect, written or spoken, subject-specific or conversational Arabic – this list of books, apps and programmes will save you time, effort and stress – hamdullah!

The Iranian women’s movement is seeing a slow revolution

It’s hard to imagine a society that prohibits the participation and viewing of sports based on gender. Unfortunately, this is the case in Iran. There was a brief period in 2006 when then-president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad announced that women would be allowed to attend football matches, until Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei intervened and reinstated the ban. … Continue reading The Iranian women’s movement is seeing a slow revolution

5 reasons to visit Palestine

Palestine is not your typical travel destination, by a long shot. Sure, it is rich in history and culture, has delicious cuisine, is religiously diverse, and contains multiple cosmopolitan city centres full of friendly and open people… but it’s also a zone of conflict, which leads many folks to cross it right off the travel bucket list. Here are five reasons why you should visit Palestine:

Revolution for Dummies: The Egyptian heart surgeon exiled for making jokes

Bassem Youssef, a heart surgeon living with his wife and baby daughter in Cairo, was one of millions of Egyptians whose lives were changed forever by the Arab Spring. His story, however, is unique. Nicknamed ‘the Jon Stewart of Egypt’, Bassem shot to fame for uploading political satire videos to YouTube from his laundry room, … Continue reading Revolution for Dummies: The Egyptian heart surgeon exiled for making jokes

Freedom Is an Inside Job: Iraqi Activist Zainab Salbi on how to heal the world

Zainab Salbi is an Iraqi humanitarian, author and activist who founded Women for Women International – a not-for-profit organisation supporting women in conflict-afflicted areas. Growing up in Baghdad, her parents’ reluctant friendship with Saddam Hussein cast a dark and repressive shadow over her childhood. Today, Salbi is telling her remarkable story in a brave and … Continue reading Freedom Is an Inside Job: Iraqi Activist Zainab Salbi on how to heal the world