Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Bayt al siyaseh

It's elections time and suddenly the politicians start noticing the peasantry: Gibran Baseel, the minister of communications and MP-hopeful in Batroun and son in law of Michel `Awn (who does not believe in hereditary political leaderships, let this be known), opens "Bayt al Mouneh" (house of traditional food) in Batroun and gives a speech on the need to preserve culture and traditions. This discourse, which I endorse when properly contextualized, sometimes gives me the creeps. I always expect a Phoenician to grab me by the throat and ask me for my ID. (Thanks Muna)

1 comment:

Steve Bloom said...

I realized on reading this post that my knowledge on the Phoenicians is a bit thin, so I figured I should at least read the Wikipedia article.

Interestingly, per Spencer Wells of the Genographic Project "the Phoenicians were the Canaanites — and the ancestors of today's Lebanese," so it looks like you'd be OK once you'd gotten past the language barrier.

But also from the article: "It is uncertain to what extent the Phoenicians viewed themselves as a single ethnicity."

One imagines arguments.