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1This 18th issue of Arabian Humanities, masterfully edited by Laure Assaf, Clio Chaveneau and Frédéric Lagrange, continues the exploration of contemporary pop cultures in the six Gulf countries. It follows a first volume published in 2020 on a similar theme and a conference organized a year later by CEFREPA, Sorbonne University Abu Dhabi and New York University Abu Dhabi. It consequently underlines our journal's continuing interest in contemporary creativity.

2Leisure and everyday culture, at the intersection of a wide range of issues and problems – be it youth, the economy, power, gender, identity, heritage, or otherness – offer very exciting ways to better understand what is at stake for people in the contemporary Peninsula. They bring to the fore what is most often obscured by approaches that focus on geopolitics or seemingly frozen societies: aspirations, pleasures, commitments. While most governments in the region have developed projects to promote the development of leisure in the economy, it must be acknowledged that the very mundane practices involved, especially the mechanisms of production and consumption, remain under the analytical radar. This volume is therefore of primary interest, parting from a focus on large investments, budget lines and top-down policies.

3While not ignoring politics, the focus of this issue also helps to shed light on the seemingly lighter side of things at a time when societies in the Middle East are feeling devastated, but also angry at the lack of adequate response to the terrible civilian suffering in Gaza since October 2023. There is no doubt that the events in Palestine will influence pop culture in the years to come, just as they are already widening the gap between Europe and North America and the rest of the world. It is then the duty of our journal and of academics to contribute to the preservation and development of spaces for exchange and mutual understanding. This volume, like the previous ones and the ones to come, is an illustration of this important ambition.

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Makram Abbès et Laurent Bonnefoy, « Editorial », Arabian Humanities [En ligne], 18 | 2023, mis en ligne le 01 décembre 2023, consulté le 17 avril 2024. URL : ; DOI :

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Makram Abbès

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