By Lara Deeb
South Beirut has lately turn into a colourful rest vacation spot with a plethora of cafés and eating places that cater to the younger, trendy, and pious. What results have those institutions had at the ethical norms, spatial practices, and concrete reports of this Lebanese neighborhood? From the varied voices of younger Shi'i Muslims trying to find locations to hang around, to the Hezbollah officers who wish this media-savvy new release to be extra politically concerned, to the non secular leaders apprehensive that Lebanese formative years are wasting their ethical compasses, Leisurely Islam presents a cosmopolitan and unique examine relaxation within the Lebanese capital.
What makes a café morally acceptable? How do humans negotiate morality with regards to varied areas? And lower than what situations may a pious Muslim visit a café that serves alcohol? Lara Deeb and Mona Harb spotlight tensions and complexities exacerbated by way of the presence of a number of non secular professionals, a fraught sectarian political context, category mobility, and a new release that takes faith without any consideration yet desires to have a good time. The authors elucidate the political, fiscal, non secular, and social alterations that experience taken position because 2000, and look at leisure's effect on Lebanese sociopolitical and concrete situations.
Asserting that morality and geography can't be absolutely understood in isolation from each other, Leisurely Islam bargains a colourful new knowing of the main strong neighborhood in Lebanon today.
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Additional resources for Leisurely Islam : negotiating geography and morality in Shi'ite South Beirut
The third was younger, and wore jeans, a fitted T-shirt that said “Toronto” on it, and a Nike cap. He had a large tattoo of some kind of animal on his arm and bandages on his nose indicating recent cosmetic surgery. As two young women in knee-length dresses from the study group upstairs descended toward the exit and waited for a taxi, “Toronto” followed them with his eyes. Another young woman came down and walked into the restroom, and again he watched. A man we had been introduced to as the manager arrived and greeted the table of three men on the ground floor.
There are no taboos that prevent people from buying and wearing the most luxurious clothes, having the most luxurious cars, and living in luxurious houses, and so on. ” When we pressed a Hizbullah official on the issue of whether material consumption, including leisure, is contrary to the party’s Islamic values, he likewise corrected us: I think those are Catholic values, modesty and not showing wealth … as if we have to hide it. In the Shiʿi ideology, it is not like that. Modesty has something to do with personal behavior, not material objects.
By 2007, we were struck by the fact that not only were there now many places in Dahiya where we felt comfortable sitting, chilling, and working over coffee or fresh fruit cocktails but that we actually had myriad options too! Our summer 2008 walking survey of the southern suburb revealed that there were at least seventy-five cafés and restaurants in the area that had opened since 2000, and most of them had opened after the devastating 2006 war. While the project that has resulted in this book began as a broader exploration of the Islamic milieu that we describe in the following chapter, it has narrowed to focus on this specific aspect of that milieu: the newly vibrant leisure sector in south Beirut, complete with a plethora of innovative cafés and restaurants that cater to a predominantly young, fashionable, middle-class, and more or less pious clientele.