A lot of people ask me why I don’t write anymore. I don’t like writing when a lot of things are happening at the same time. This tends to obscure my attention. Also I prefer things to cool down before I can talk about them. For example, I won’t write on Imad Mughnieh’s assassination before next week I guess. But I have a lot to say about it. The other reason why I don’t write is that I am trying to write a thesis. This means saving thinking-typing skills for this activity.
The other thing is that I started teaching at the American University of Beirut and I must say that everyday I feel like writing pages on this fascinating experience. What I am exposed to here, in terms of student life style, intellectual background, faculty interaction, the politics of the university, but also teaching in itself, is just so overwhelming. For someone who thinks his main activity is ‘observation’, well, AUB is like a microcosm of “Lebanon”. A microscosm of post-colonial discourse too. I hope to write more on that.
Let me leave you now with an anecdote. Do you know what happened on March 14 apart from a ‘cedar revolution’? On March 14, boys and girls, Israel invaded Lebanon for the first time in 1978. On this day houses were destroyed in some parts of the south, people got killed, etc. and on March 14 1995, the parliament issued a book entitled 14 March: Lebanese International Day for the South and Western Bekaa with a foreword by Berri. I’m sure this book was the result of the works of Amal and Hizbullah affiliated Parliamentary members, but I’m still investigating on it because it has a huge archive of Israeli aggression on Lebanon (prisoners, territory, water, etc). The main idea here is that these guys are actually contributing to the writing of Lebanese “causes” and history through the use of the sanctified institutions (Parliament).
Isn’t it a bit ironic? The conflicting histories of the “Lebanese” entity.