Sunday, November 19, 2006


"Did talk of sure but gradual reform, mean changing things for the better, or a re-form, old ways taking another shape?

When it was said that the most beautiful of days are yet ahead of us, who were the “us” therein? The Riffa-based lot only or the dwellers of towns and villages as well?"

Beside the dextrous use of vocabulary, fellow Bahraini blogger Manama Republic masters the use of metaphor and Irony like no other (even the title of the blog carries deeper connotations). The previous quote is intended to highlight the irony between promises and the disappointing eventualities. I am no literary critic or english lit graduate, but I have come to discern the power of language in engaging the reader and conveying a message as a true art-form. The subtle wit is carried in every word and sentence structure. For example in coining terms such as "the dignity tax" or describing the soul of a man matching his "white thoub".

I am always left in wonderment and a sense of satisfaction reading the blog, "very nicely put", or why didn't I think of it like that. There is not much more left to comment on any particular issue. It is thoughtful "truth-seeking" at its very best-whilst he finds the nuances, most other blogs and I, report the superficialities in comparison.

On the eve of Halloween, he asked,

"Were jails empty of political detainees a trick or a treat?
Were homes unbroken into in the middle of the night trick or treat?
Was the most favourite mask, the Charter, trick or treat?
Was the top performing costume, the Reforming Democrat, trick or treat?"
The rhetorical and situational use of irony here is extremely poignant, has this King of ours actually given or taken away?

Today, he highlighted the irony of the arrest of two political activists for breaking a gag order,

"So swift the wheels of our ruling family justice turn in this constitutionally owned kingdom of theirs. When it suits their "just" purposes that is . It has been more than 48 days since a ruling family judge slapped a gag order on Al-Bandar Report, and yet not a single legal proceeding was undertaken against the really and criminally seditious".
Indeed, it is very ironic that the incriminated are free, and those calling for investigation are swiftly jailed. This ringing sense of profoundness through the use of irony only deepens our understanding of the subject (whereas something like humour brings insight and tolerance as another important tool, Repplier). Although irony or wit arn't necessarily arguments per se, nevertheless they are important polemical tools of dissent. Dissent in the face of an unjust state, is not only a moral duty, but in all its forms, consolidates a dignified existence, a heavily taxed one, it seems "This is a country with a steep dignity tax. And Dr. Mohammed Saeed and Hussain al-Habshi, are the very latest payers of it."

Very rarely will you find me eulogising (let alone publicly) but I feel unashamedly compelled to do so in the spirit of Kierkegaard's belief that "Irony is a disciplinarian feared only by those who do not know it, but cherished by those who do". I cherish irony, which lies in every nuance of our unfortunate situation in Bahrain, and therefore I cherish your blog, MR.

Posted by BB @ 11/19/2006 01:42:00 AM

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hear hear...

Posted by Blogger Mahmood Al-Yousif @ 11/19/2006 02:54:00 PM #

Couldn't agree more

Posted by Anonymous Anonymous @ 11/20/2006 11:15:00 PM #

'I can live on a compliment for two months'. But that’s an awfully generous serving for one person. 98.4% of the overly creamy stuff above is misplaced at my table.

Irony is not intentional (the only rehab route for defeat). Dexterity as in excessive ironing, is no high merit. Unlike yours and few others’, my English is not wrinkle-free.

How such defects escaped a trained eye like yours is beyond me, but it is bound to happen. Until then, I'll take the comments above, cherished as they are, as politically motivated.

Posted by Blogger MR @ 11/22/2006 12:54:00 AM #

Aside from the cream, the defects are not unnoticed, however they are insignificant in the face of the conveyed meaning.

It is more than mere political motivations my friend. I had hoped my critique, a weak one being no expert I admit, is sincere.

Posted by Blogger Bahrania @ 11/22/2006 01:28:00 AM #
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