Amiralay, Omar

Documentary, history and memory

Omar Amiralay (1944-2011)  was a Syrian documentary film-maker who was renowned for his critical work as well as for his commitment to civil society. He played a prominent role in the Damascus Spring, an incipient movement for democracy that was suppressed in 2001. As director and manager of a film academy in Damascus, he was concerned, above all, with handing down the historical experiences of his society. His films include: „Par un jour de violence ordinaire, mon Ami Michel Seurat ...“ (1996), „Il y a tant de Choses encore à raconter“ (1997), „A Plate of Sardines (or the First Time I Heard of Israel)“ (1997), L'homme aux semelles d'or (2000), „A Flood in Baath Country“ (2003).

Di/Visions critically examined ideologies and practices of divisions and borders in the Middle East. It was a joint project of the Haus der Kulturen der Welt and the research program Europe in the Middle East – The Middle East in Europe in the year 2008.

„Di/Visions. Culture and Poltics of the Middle East” was edited by Catherine David, Georges Khalil und Bernd Scherer and included a DVD with the conversations (Wallstein Verlag, Göttingen 2009). Since 2015 the edited volume has been available as an open access publication.

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