Celebrating Culture - Literary Communities of Practice in Doha
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Our paper focuses on the role of arts and culture in Doha. More specifically, we examine literary circles in Doha (both Arab and English speaking) and regard them as 'communities of practice.' According to Etienne Wenger, communities of practice are "groups of people who share a concern or a passion for something they do and learn how to do it better as they interact regularly." Moreover, such communities are seen as promoting innovation, developing social capital, facilitating and spreading knowledge within a group, and spreading existing knowledge. Recently, there has been a surge of active literary communities presenting their creative work in both English and Arabic attracting a variety of audiences and fans. For instance, young authors such as Kumam Al Maadeed, Eissa Abdullah, Buthaina Al-Janahi and Abdullah Fakhro not only have a huge online following, but they also have a significant fan base attending their events throughout the city. Besides these communities, there are also numerous organizations with which these celebrity authors are associated such as Qalam Hebr, Qatari Forum for Authors, and Outspoken Doha - we argue that such organizations can also be regarded as communities of practice. Our contention is that these ever-growing communities provide a performative space in which poets, singers, authors and artists can experiment with the fluidity of their assigned identities, cultures and traditions.
- Theme 4: Social Change and Identity [28 items ]