The Wheel of Change – Dynamics of a Metropolis

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Among different Arab societies, the Egyptian society is considered to be a very dynamic one, with new changes taking place, new attitudes adopted and new trends always on the rise (whether they are of a positive or negative nature).
Change is the essence of life, accordingly the word change in itself certainly entails the concept of new beginnings and whatever can be associated with the word new and all it triggers.The dynamics that make up our society involve brimming concepts, always on the move individuals with vibrant opinions, and new innovative techniques that either pull society down the drain or infuse a shot of new healthy change. Egypt has always been a place where one can find the good, the bad, the ugly and the brand new of whatever you can imagine. Basically, let us switch back and forth in a spur of the moment flowing manner between what can be perceived and judged as new in the Egyptian society.
Let us take a simple action like walking down any of the extremely busy bustling streets of Cairo; only to easily discover people’s new take on life which is represented by a depressed attitude and gloomy facial expressions. I mean the the myriad of gloomy faces filling the streets of Cairo is such a new and sharp contrast to the image of Egyptians as happy cheerful people. Also, here is something new in the realm of politics, as nowadays whenever any problem arises or disaster strikes, politicians and the government are ready with answers (which mostly do not satisfy the angry mobs at all). On another note, we have witnessed the emergence of a much needed social phenomenon as represented by the gatherings and rallying around national sports events like what happened during the African Cup of Nations which produced a huge turnout of people all chanting for the victory of their country and all greatly immersed in a sense of being one. Looking a few years back we would not have found or sensed such a need for a feeling of national unity which is turned into a search for a certain something for all people to gather around.
A major issue that is new to our Egyptian society is the amount of escalating violence in all societal aspects. It is enough for one to look through the newspapers’ crime pages,to realize the amount of violence prevalent in our every day lives and dealings. Honestly, crimes are getting uglier and more violent by the moment. These days we see family members brutally killing each other for such absurd trivial reasons, not to mention the surprise and horror one gets from reading the details of the crime which are charged with venom, hate and calculated violence. I am not talking here only about the increasing violence as exemplified by violent actions, but we can also notice a new attitude of dealing aggressively with each other even in the tiniest matters such as driving one’s car (oh i take back what I said about driving cars which in Egypt is considered to be mission impossible). Characteristics the likes of benevolence and patience were always part and parcel of our personalities (like well known trademarks or slogans), but nowadays the new it trend is to be violent and aggressive. Some issues that have center stage in our society are relatively new, but nonetheless have affected our society greatly. The fact that girls and women get harassed on the streets and in public places is not ultimately a new phenomenon (bearing in mind that harassment has become an everyday hassle that women have to face), however what is new and will always remain new as it can never be the norm is the way the blame is thrown on women who are harassed.
By any means, please bear with me a little more, as this idea of all new is a mixture of good and bad, foreign and familiar, understandable and never to be fathomed concepts. Is it not true that we sometimes hear the saying ‘out with the old in with the?’, well the aforementioned saying is so showing of the changes taking place in the cultural scene in Egypt whether in the domain of music, the cinema industry or whatever is related to the world of literature. The music scene in Egypt is greatly evolving, thus opening more venues for various bands playing different genres and at the same time providing some breathing space for the ailing public. The cinema industry is flourishing with fresh talents, amazing down to earth scripts and a much awaited deep thought provoking content. New literary voices are springing up offering real and refreshing perspectives. Day after day habits alter, attitudes change, and new inventions and technologies appear that have literally turned the world into one market. Speaking of new technologies, there is no doubt that we are always on the lookout for new means of entertainment among the greatest source and provider of entertainment the Internet. Not to mention Facebook, which has taken the online Egyptians by storm and established itself as a national hobby and pastime.
Finally, the bottom line is that without the concept of new things and without the emergence of new issues, attitudes and beginnings life would lose its vitality and moving dynamics. So, thumbs up for the wheel of change bringing us new things every once in a while: the good, the bad and the indifferent.
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