Honestly, god bless the world wide web, where would we be without it? It’s where we go to satisfy our infinite craving to learn, know and discover, especially about ourselves and the places we call home.
Tapping into our incessant desire to connect (or reconnect) with our roots, heritage and respective cultures, there’s a little corner of the internet we’re especially appreciative of. These Instagram pages have taken over social media to become some of the leading voices of a golden generation that either wants to give back or reach out to the world.
Ranging anywhere from a couple of hundreds to thousands of followers, we’d like to thank these accounts for their will and dedication to provide us with some of the freshest content out there by listing five of our favourites below.
Led by a French-Tunisian-Egyptian duo of journalists Fatma Torkhani and Donia Ismail, Arabia Vox aims at casting a light while emboldening the many voices of the Arab world and its subsequent diaspora through detailed posts, videos and articles that focus on the region’s overall culture, history and heritage. Placing a specific onus on the North African region, their way of celebrating the Maghreb is not something we are too used to seeing online and that we cannot wait to see languaged in English and made accessible to all the rest of us – isn’t sharing caring after all ?
Our favourite concept on the page ? The weekly “Akhbar” posts which summarise the region’s top 5 stories to swipe through quickly and keep yourself up to date at any time. If you’re feeling comfortable enough with French or even just up for the challenge, then AV is a page that feels like it has almost been specifically tailored for you.
I remember instantly falling in love with this account’s name and ethos. Maison Choukrane (or Dar Merci), is an online initiative that is, in their own words, “stuck somewhere between Atay and Baguette”; as the account is a playful ode to the founders’ double identities, roots and values.
Always keen on promoting Arab-led businesses while also introducing the prominent Arab faces in vogue at the moment, the Moroccan duo behind the page, Yasmine and Salma, may hail from France but aim at beaming their vibe, style and double aesthetic to the rest of the world in a maghrebi manner. Quickly becoming an iconic page in the French-speaking realm, the account regularly touches upon a wide range of nostalgic topics that often bring us back to our spirited summers back in bled.
Refreshing and undeniably cool, Maison Choukrane is serving some hot tea and biscuits while inviting us to help ourselves as if we were in our own home, but online, and that’s something that we really dig.
Gathering a quite impressive community of followers and supporters online, Afikra probably needs no introduction. The now global-media and educational platform focuses on the region’s eclectic and rich history while always making room for a touch of culture. Designed to cultivate curiosity in the community, Afikra proactively encourages members and followers to question dominant narratives while increasing the importance of the global south as a whole.
Building communities while bringing existing one’s together, Afikra’s niche way of probing curiosity is one that we all could envy and learn from.
Middle East Archive
Middle East Archive is a literal collection of visual memories from the past that too many of us would have thought we had lost and that we are putting our hands on after far too long. Retrieving what we thought was lost and sharing it to the world, the page “attempts to bring forward everyday memories that immerse one within the locally lived cultures (…) with particular attention to candid moments, banal interactions and simplicity” which bring the MENA spirit back at put it at the forefront of our feeds.
Mainly through photography, the page regularly collaborates with photographers with different styles, perspectives and backgrounds which, when all brought together, give birth to a varied selection of pictures and landscapes to feel the aura of yesterday, today and imagine tomorrow.
With the same vim as the pages mentioned in the above, Waastaa is a wide mosaic of posts online that celebrates photography, art, music and design from the Middle East & North Africa and exposes it to the world. Curating from over 1000 accounts, the account sheds light on the region’s creatives and makes sure they get the exposure they deserve. Through pictures, videos and more, if you’re looking for the architects of tomorrow’s cultural scene, look no further – you’ll find them there !