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Ibrahim El-Salahi Pain Relief at The Saatchi Gallery, London

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Above, a tuktuk (rickshaw) driver negotiates the streets of Imtidad, Khartoum, late afternoon, 2015.

This week’s post offers a roundup of recent cultural entries for Women’s Literacy Sudan.

Happy Springtime Reading!

Ramadan Greetings 2022 features excerpts from colonial and contemporary Sudanese writers reflecting on their spiritual and very human responses to a Sudanese Ramadan. Kamala Ishaq at Sudan National Museum is a tribute to an often sadly overlooked work by groundbreaking Sudanese artist, Kamal Ishaq; her 1970s murals which form the stunning centre piece to the reception hall of the Sudan National Museum. “A City Waking Up” is a lyrical evocation of Sudanese city life over recent decades through the poetry of Sue Wallace-Shaddad.

Drawing on the colonial accounts of J.W.Crowfoot, Angels of The Nile explores the fascinating folk culture surrounding spirits of The River Nile. Everything is Possible reproduces some of the delicate and charming drawings by Margaret Potter capturing Sudanese vernacular architecture of the 1950s. In The Rahat, I explore the history and culture behind this emblematic garment, still imbued with special symbolic significance when worn at weddings.

Kohl has been used in Sudan since ancient times. Sudanese writers and researchers provide magical insights into its use in “Who will trace the kohl for our eyes?” Sudanese proverbs are pithy, witty and punchy. You can read a selection of the proverbs beautifully curated by Muna Zaki in her upcoming second volume of Sudanese Proverbs in The Dung Beetle and the Moon. If you are interested in folktales, you might enjoy the gently subversive Jiraida.

Below, scenes of Khartoum.

In her seventies, Dr Liz Hodgkin (pictured below) returned to South Sudan to teach in the beautiful town of Isohe. Read excerpts from her moving account of life there in Letters from Isohe. You can hear an interview with Liz in Elizabeth Hodgkin on Letters from Isohe.

Memory and A Date With My Memory showcase the work of US-based Sudanese artist, Reem Alsadig. Her intimate, multilayered scenes of Sudanese domestic life and wedding processions (see below) capture and elevate moments of Sudanese life in a deeply personal way.

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