Our women on the ground
Essays by Arab Women Reporting From the Arab World
A collection of essays by dedicated journalists on the many hurdles they face as women in the field of Middle Eastern newsgathering—edited by Lebanese British journalist Hankir and introduced by CNN chief international anchor Christiane Amanpour. In many cases, these conflict-zone reporters were inspired to become journalists due to heart-rending stories among their own families and friends. “To become a journalist in some of these places takes a special kind of courage for a woman,” writes Amanpour. “It can mean defying family and community, and it brings unique challenges and entails sacrifices specific to women.” These stories from the field are rare and remarkable, especially because the writers are “twice burdened,” according to Hankir: Not only do they hail from places that mistreat women worse than anywhere in the world; they are also “some of the most repressed reporters in the world.” The book writes of the “unspoken understanding that if you delved too deeply into women’s lives, you risked being labeled as soft, or missing the point.” A Lebanese journalist covering the wars in the Middle East for American newspapers, Nada Bakri became deeply disenchanted with the profession after the death of her husband and son’s father, New York Times correspondent Anthony Shadid, in Syria in 2012. Egyptian journalist Lina Attalah recalls the 2011 Arab Spring activism in terms of responding to her father’s conflicted feelings about her being a journalist. Egyptian photojournalist Eman Helal writes of being routinely restricted from “hard news” assignments and then finding her story in the harassment of women protesters in Tahrir Square in Cairo in 2011. Others, such as photographer Amira Al-Sharif, who was born in Saudi Arabia but raised in Yemen, write that being women allowed them to cover stories that men could not. A timely, engaging work that reveals why the journalist’s profession is so important and so endangered. TW
The Revolutionary Science of Why We Age―and Why We Don’t Have To
The book is an uplifting description of scientific efforts aimed at prolonging lifespan of human race.
The author mentions that scientific research has discovered what causes aging along with discovering how to treat it because, despite what doctors and philosophers have claimed throughout history, aging is not inevitable but it is like any other disease. Scientifically inclined readers may be occasionally turned off by his affection for dramatic stories of individuals who defy aging but they cannot deny that he is an acclaimed, award-winning scientist who works hard to explain his groundbreaking research and that of laboratories around the world. He begins by saying
that way back in the primordium the ancestors of every living thing on this planet today evolved to sense DNA damage, slow cellular growth and divert energy to DNA repair until it was fixed dubbed as survival circuit. In the 1950s, scientists discovered that DNA damage occurs throughout life. Since it is disastrous for a cell to divide with broken DNA, repair mechanisms suppress growth and reproduction until they are finished. Cells that do not divide live longer. Insects and mice mature quickly, reproduce, and soon die. Elephants and whales grow slowly and live much longer lives. Cells of the bristlecone pine, the oldest of which is nearly 5,000 years old, show no signs of aging. It is discovered the mechanism of growth suppression in hormones and also in genes that produce such specific enzymes. These longevity enhancers respond to stress but also to exercise, intermittent fasting, low-protein and low-calorie diets along with pharmaceuticals that will soon emerge from laboratories. Also in the works are DNA monitoring and reprogramming, already well advanced in animals, that can detect malfunctions and reset the aging clock. TW