Category Archives: why read

Friday Links: Celebrating UAE National Day and Whose Kids Are Reading Now?

Over at ArabLit, I write about a new survey on Arab reading habits. Survey authors say that the adage “Egypt writes, Lebanon publishes, and Iraq reads” is no longer valid. Of course, we know—and it’s always painful to think about … Continue reading

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When Children Read, It’s Not the ‘Educational Content’ That Counts

I’m still feeling irritable about a Q&A in the Arab Times with Dr Sajed Al-Abdali that I read last week.

It starts off promisingly enough (Arabs should read), but then he gets down to why: to “learn” different “content.” (And if the same content could be learned from films, video games, or the radio, then he would advocate that. After all, aren’t those things more fun than reading?) Continue reading

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What if Egyptians Gave Up Cigarettes for Books?

Several months back, when I was talking to former Dar el Shorouk, current BQFP head Seif Salmawy, I said that books are too expensive for (most) Egyptians. Salmawy countered with the amount of money Egyptians spend on mobile-phone services each … Continue reading

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Parents Should Let Their Children Have a Wide Choice in (Arabic) Books

Reader Anna Z. recently noted over at Arabic Literature (in English) that there are “legions” of Arab teenage girls “who are nearly as obsessed with Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight books as their western counterparts.” It’s possible that some parents—particularly the sort … Continue reading

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Teaching Your Child to Read in Arabic Will Help Them Read in English, Too

The most common reason Egyptian parents give for exposing their children to English-language books instead of Arabic ones is neither the difficulty of MSA Arabic, nor the lack of quality kids books in Arabic.

I spoke this weekend with a bookseller who told me the reason most often given is that—and I’ve heard this one, too—is that “they already know Arabic.” Continue reading

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Two Big Reasons People ‘Don’t Buy Books’ in Cairo or Why I’m Going to Start Selling Kids Books on the Metro

Reason No. 1: Bad Distribution Friends visited us yesterday. They have a nearly four-year-old daughter and a two-year-old son. Children often visit each other’s toys, but my friend’s daughter seemed to be on a visit to my sons’ books. She … Continue reading

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What to Get Dad for Father’s Day

Surveys show that fathers don’t read to their kids as much as moms do. (The survey linked to was conducted in the U.S., but I imagine the data holds for many other countries as well.) But over at the blog … Continue reading

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