Course in Cairo: Mediterranean Cultural Heritage (28 Dec. 2015)

This is to announce my next course, taking place in Cairo on the 28th of December 2015:‎

Course Title: Mediterranean Cultural Heritage

Course Language: Arabic (slides in English) ‎

Venue & Date: 33 A Meqias al-Roda Street, 4th floor apt. 9. – Monday, 28 December 2015‎

Duration: 3 hours (7:30pm – 10:30pm)‎

Course Description:‎
From ancestral knowledge, prehistoric rock art and Bronze Age temples to classical Greek ‎drama and Roman architectural wonders; from medieval epic poems and elaborate crafts to ‎fantastic underwater worlds, this course is exceptional both in content and in scope, as it ‎offers a fairly comprehensive mosaic of the Mediterranean cultural heritage with all its ‎diversity and richness.‎
It is a journey across our civilizing sea, as we sail in the footsteps of Ulysses, through the ‎verses of Ovid, the music of Ziryab, the paintbrush of Jacques-Louis David, the ceramics of ‎Picasso, and indulge in the pleasures of the UNESCO-listed Mediterranean Diet. In short: ‎tangible and intangible heritage of the Mediterranean region as you never experienced it ‎before

Who should attend?‎
Anyone with a passion for/an interest in the Mediterranean, its history, its culture and its ‎people. No academic/professional background whatsoever is required. ‎

Mohammed Elrazzaz holds an MA in Arts & Cultural Management from the Universitat ‎Internacional de Catalunya (Barcelona, Spain). He is Professor of Tools for Cultural ‎Management (since 2010) and Mediterranean Heritage (since 2015) at the same university. ‎He participated as speaker in several international cultural conferences in Spain, Italy, ‎Denmark and Egypt. ‎

Course Fees:‎
EGP 300 / person. ‎
The fee includes handouts (reading material and briefs) and access to the PowerPoint ‎presentation (in pdf format). ‎
Voice and video recording not permitted.‎

Deadline for Reservation/Cancellation: ‎
‎7 December 2015 (or as soon as the course is fully booked)‎

Please contact me for any further enquiries and for reservations:‎ ‎

New Microsoft PowerPoint Presentation

Dubrovnik in Photos

Beyond the massive tourism that has both plagued and blessed Dubrovnik, something extraordinary awaits any visitor with the slightest interest in history, culture or natural beauty. This city is the reincarnation of the old Republic of Ragusa which, through exemplary and peaceful diplomacy, managed to maintain its independence during some four centuries in the shadow of such giants as Venice and the Ottoman Empire. It was here that slavery was first abolished long before Great Britain ever thought it was a good idea.

Once you overcome the initial charm of the old port, the elegant piazzas, and the elegantly restored Stradun with its limestone and marble paving and its noble palaces, you start scratching beneath the surface and enjoying the ‘beat’ of the side streets. Surprisingly, and despite its relatively small size and tourist-trodden tracks, the Old Town is not lacking in idyllic corners where you have it all for yourself and where you take every photo imaginable.

It doesn’t take much imagination to understand why Dubrovnik is considered the world’s most fabulous medieval walled city. Once you do the inevitable and magnificent tour of the city walls, you realize it’s not just the walls that are fascinating, but also the views of the cityscape that the walls command: Ahead of me, an entire city unfolded. I could contemplate all the houses, all the rooftops; I could gaze at the sea and at the nearby Island of Lokrum. King’s Landing in all its grace! Is it any surprise that this extraordinary city served as the setting for Game of Thrones’ most important city?

The most memorable view though is not one you enjoy from the city itself, but rather from the top of Mount Srd, which you reach through a short yet joyful cable car ride. Only from the top can you enjoy a view of the entire old town of Dubrovnik, as well as an unforgettable sunset if you’re there on time. Back to Dubrovnik, one can roam around the port forever. At the legendary Buza Bar, I stared at the Adriatic waters, imagining a Ragusan merchant ship heading to the Black Sea and how the voyage must have been like (Ragusa was the only European city allowed by the Ottomans to conduct trade in the Black Sea).

The pleasures of the Dalmatian Coast is complemented by the temptations of the Dalmatian gastronomy, and Dubrovnik is a perfect place to experience the Mediterranean cuisine with a Dalmatian twist: the brodet (fish stew), the octopus salad and the smoked swordfish Carpaccio are just a few examples.

Another priceless advantage of Dubrovnik is the fact that it serves as a base camp for tens of maritime adventures and island tours, and I don’t think I would be able to forget the natural beauty of Mljet or Lopud any time soon. I will let the photos do the rest of the talking.

The Mediterranean of Van Gogh

My dear Theo,‎

I’m writing to you from Saintes-Maries on the Mediterranean at last. The Mediterranean ‎has a colour like mackerel, in other words, changing — you don’t always know if it’s ‎green or purple — you don’t always know if it’s blue — because a second later, its ‎changing reflection has taken on a pink or grey hue.‎
It’s a funny thing, the family — quite unintentionally, and despite myself, I’ve often ‎thought here from time to time of our uncle the seaman, who has certainly seen the ‎shores of this sea many times.‎

‎(…) I took a walk along the seashore one night, on the deserted beach. It wasn’t ‎cheerful, but not sad either, it was beautiful.‎

The sky, a deep blue, was flecked with clouds of a deeper blue than primary blue, an ‎intense cobalt, and with others that were a lighter blue — like the blue whiteness of ‎milky ways. Against the blue background stars twinkled, bright, greenish, white, light ‎pink — brighter, more glittering, more like precious stones than at home — even in ‎Paris. So it seems fair to talk about opals, emeralds, lapis, rubies, sapphires. The sea a ‎very deep ultramarine — the beach a mauvish and pale reddish shade, it seemed to me ‎‎— with bushes. In addition to half-sheet drawings I have a large drawing, the pendant ‎of the last one. ‎

More soon, I hope. Handshake.‎

Ever yours,‎

Seascape by Van Gogh