Saudi Hip-Hop, The WaPo & NYT Foreign Features

0221cashbah.jpgLast year, this particular FBNY editor wrote an article on Israeli and Palestinian hip-hop for Slate. That experience made reading today’s Washington Post article on one of Saudi Arabia’s first hip-hop groups especially painful to read. In a country where men and women are forbidden from mixing and the concept of “nightclubs” or, hell, live music in general does not exist, the members of Dark2Men suffered:

The feeling of being under siege and misunderstood by society has turned the group’s members into close friends, they said.

“People don’t understand us here. They think being part of a rap group means you’re less Arab or less Muslim or you want to imitate the West,” Zain said.

What else made it painful? Oh yes. We read it in the Washington Post, not the New York Times. Although the NYT have been good with national feature stories lately, it seems like international feature coverage in the Times has been lacking. Today’s “Journal” piece about the Lebanese film industry was an exception. We wish we were reading more foreign slice-of-life stories in the Times instead of the latest Sunday Styles fauxtrend. What do you think? Let us know.