About Me

This site was started in January of 2008 by Josh Berer. It is meant to be a catalogue of several strands of my life, as I try and balance these worlds. Since 2003 I have moved to a different place every year. I recently moved to Washington DC from Bloomington, Indiana where I was in grad school for Central Asian studies. My focus was on Uzbek and Dari languages and contemporary history. Before Indiana, I lived briefly in Chicago, and before that Sana’a, Yemen. I moved to Yemen after a year of work for the Regional Council of Unrecognized Bedouin Villages in the Negev. I returned to Israel/Palestine in September 2008 after six months in Los Angeles, where I worked at a cheese store, and then a rare book dealer’s warehouse.

Prior to those six months, I spent another six months in Sana’a, where I studied Arabic language and literature and taught English to Yemenis at a private language institute. I graduated from the University of Washington in June of 2007 with a degree in Near Eastern Languages. While my focus was in Arabic, Hebrew and Turkish also played roles. I managed, somehow, to go to 5 universities in 4 years, (Hebrew U in Jerusalem, Bard College in NY, Bogazici Universitesi in Istanbul, UW, University of Jordan, back to UW) which is part of where the name of this blog comes from.

I live with my girlfriend Rachael Strecher, whose photography graces most of my posts.

IMG_1783sm

She has covered news stories in South Africa, Australia, Israel/Palestine, the Russian invasion of Georgia, post-Katrina New Orleans, and Yemen. You can see more of her work at Lightstalkers.

You can check out my other blog of Arabic – English translations at Hans Wehr’s Disciples.

Research Interests:

Arabic and Islamic book arts
Ottoman Calligraphy and its practice
Endangered languages and their preservation
Isolated Jewish communities in the Islamic world
Folktales and storytelling
Arabic poetry and recitation
Modern Arab and Islamic graphic design
Turkic linguistics and dialectology
Iranian linguistics and dialectology
Minority languages in Central Asia

“The ethnosphere is humanity’s great legacy. It’s the symbol of all that we are and all that we can be as an astonishingly inquisitive species. And just as the biosphere has been severely eroded, so too is the ethnosphere — and if anything at a far greater rate. No biologists, for example, would dare suggest that 50 percent of all species are moribund or on the brink of extinction because it simply is not true, and yet that — the most apocalyptic scenario in the realm of biological diversity — scarcely approaches what we know to be the most optimistic scenario in the realm of cultural diversity. And the great indicator of that, of course, is language loss.”

-Wade Davis, Preserving the Ethnosphere

“For a long while I have believed, this is perhaps my version of Darius Xerxes Cama’s belief in a fourth function of outsidedness, that in every generation there are a few souls, call them lucky or cursed, who are simply born not belonging, who come into the world semi-detached, if you like, without strong affiliation to family or location or nation or race, that there may even be millions, billions of such souls, as many non-belongers as belongers perhaps, that in some, the phenomenon may be as natural a manifestation of human nature as its opposite, but one that has been mostly frustrated throughout human history, by lack of opportunity. And not only by that, for those who value stability, who fear resistance, uncertainty, change, have erected a powerful system of stigmas and taboos against rootlessness, that disruptive, anti-social force, so that we mostly conform. we pretend to be motivated by loyalties and solidarities we do not really feel, we hide our secret identities beneath the false skin of those identities which bear the belongers’ seal of approval. But the truth leaks out in our dreams, alone in our beds (because we are alone at night, even if we do not sleep by ourselves), we soar, we fly, we flee. And in the waking dreams our societies permit, in our myths, our art, our songs, we celebrate the non-belongers, the different ones, the outlaws, the freaks. What we forbid ourselves we pay good money to watch, in a playhouse or movie theatre, or to read about between the secret covers of a book. Our libraries, our palaces of entertainment, tell the truth. The tramp, the assassin, the rebel, the artist, the mutant, the outcast, the delinquent, the devil, the sinner, the traveler, the gangster, the runner, the mask. If we did not recongnize in them our least-fulfilled needs we would not invent them over and over again, in every place, in every language, in every time.”

-Salman Rushdie, The Ground Beneath Her Feet


94 Responses to “About Me”

  1. josh,

    please keep me updated on this project! im also going to edit my post about your project with the book…

    you have a gift. thank you for sharing it…

    love.

    LUSH

  2. hello brother Josh ;
    I am M. A. Ariky ,from dreamful Taizz city ,Yemen.
    I read about your life in Yemen(roots),Israel(brothers),Turkey(open skies) ,absolutely it’s amizing .
    so I want to be just a friend for u;
    and I may be a corrspondent here!!

  3. Hello dear Josh,
    I wish you good luck, I also hope that you listen to Dr. Zakir Naik and Ahmed Deedat (they have lots of lectures on youtube) as they might also change your life :)

    We share another point, I also think I’m out of time and if I wasn’t, then I’m out of place :)

  4. cool blog, i’m not sure how i stumbled upon it, but i’m glad i did

  5. hey josh,
    i’ve found your site when i was searching all about ‘ya rayah’.
    i’m a dj and my name is ya rayah, my site on myspace is: http://www.myspace.com/bjoernmaletz or http://www.myspace.com/djyarayah. can i take your ‘ya rayah’-sign on my page? than i put an link to your site.
    thanks for an answer and best wishes from germany,
    bjoern

  6. Dear Josh, thank you for contacting me on Wikipedia. You may find Ibn Barun’s Kitab al-muwazzanah in its abridged English translation in the following publication:

    Wechter, Pinchas. Ibn Barun’s Arabic works on Hebrew grammar and lexicography (Philadelphia : Dropsie College, 1964), 235pp.

    I may also recommend Sa’dia ibn Danan’s “ad-Daruri fi-l-Lughat-ul-‘Ibraniyyah” / “Sepher ha-Shorashim” (Granada: Universidad de Granada, 1996). The latter appears in a bilingual Judeo-Arabic and Spanish edition.

    There are other scholarly editions, mainly in Israel dealing with various Judeo-Arabic dialects. Let me know if you have any other questions.

  7. Let me just add one more source for Arabic-Hebrew cognates and etymology – a brilliant two-volume Milon ‘Ivri-‘Aravi etymologi l’safah ha-m’dubberet. I believe it is published by Dvir Publishing house.

  8. The author is Avraham Stahl (or Shtal).

  9. Hi Josh,

    I just want to tell how awesome it has been to have found you online. You are so incredibly interesting and worldly…something that seems to be a rarity in this country…and i appreciate it so very much. I hope that you keep this site going so that others can learn from this wonderful journey you are on.

    thank you for sharing.

  10. I am looking for someone who can make me write out “My Father” or father in arabic calligraphy. He passed and I want a beautiful memorial of him on me. Please, I’ve been looking everywere and I cannot find anyone who can do this for me.

    Danielmanouki@hotmail.com

  11. JOsh, how can we get in touch? I am interested in travel to Yemen and noticed you have been there within the year… please contact me at the e-mail provided…thanks…

  12. Thank you for the Rushdie quote, how perfect. I am more than twice your age, but I find that the more I stay true to the “un-belonging” of my art life, the more “belonging” I feel to universal consciousness. I am so glad I found your site. Thank you for your gift! L.

  13. Hi, I am a soldier in Iraq, I live pretty close to the Iraqis since we are in their town and the Iraqi soldiers gave me two nicknames, some of them call me Al-shahid, but most call me Majnoon, I would like to have a caligraphy of the name majnoon for a tattoo but dont know where since we only associate with iraqi army. They told me Majnoon means crazy and told me the story behind it, I love the name and would appreciate a tattoo of it but i’m stuck on where to find someone to write it nicely…please help…

  14. Hi Josh,

    Great images on this page, where are tney from?

    Came across your site looking for some calligraphy for my son’s Pillars of Islam homework assignment.

    I’ve lived or visited the same places as you (except Turkey) and learned the same languages (except Turkish).

    Dave

  15. how can i get a hold of you i need some designs made

  16. Hey,
    You’re a nomad too. I’m a nomad…sort of. I feel like a nomad because I move about 8 times throughout my childhood and I feel like that’s what I need to do continually, move around. I guess we have many things in common. Email me, I’d like to talk to you. nomadiccurrysenshi@yahoo.com

  17. My friend,

    If you ever find yourself in Damascus, ask one of the sufi students to direct you to the halaqa of Shaykh Muhammad Ya’qoubi, and perhaps try to meet with him. You might find some spiritual direction. Even better … if your in Amman, head out to the ’sports city’ district (”madinat al-riyadiyyah”) and from there get a cab to the locality of ‘kharabsha’ … ask a shop keeper for the ‘zawiyah’ of Shaykh Nuh Kellar. I hope you meet him … he left america bout 20 years back and has been living in syria/jordan since. I belive he has gatherings in english on thursdays as well as in arabic througout the week. Perhaps you’ll go, perhaps not.

  18. Sun comes again in the form of writing – writing with a connection
    A connection to another thing, it’s a beautiful thing to share with others.
    Connection gains freedom, breaks down barriers
    Breaks structured judgement and creates peace and acceptance within.
    Thank you for your gift love

  19. Are you in Jerusalem? – would like to meet you. We’re a family of 6 with some overlapping inspirations. The tent flap is open – mail me and maybe we can engineer a nexus (space/time) + ? soup. My name is Jessie. Surfed onto this virtual island in a quest related to my daughter’s b.mitzvah and was rewarded with a fantastic kaleidoscope breakfast. ألف شكرا – המון תודה

  20. Josh,

    Your website is a treasure in an ocean of information. I will have you visit your site on a more regular basis. I appreciate the calligraphy that you post – it’s beautiful. When you get the chance, check out my blog: http://capturedphoton.blogspot.com. It’s a photoblog – hope you like it.

  21. Hi Josh, Very nice site, i would like to contact you by email. Please write me.

  22. Hey Josh,

    Good to meet you. It’s interesting to read that you want to live in a yurt. I live in Kazakhstan, have you ever been around here?

    This not belonging thing really resonates… It would be cool to meet you. Let me know if you come here, i’ll show you around!

  23. Hi Josh,
    Firstly I should state that this is not really a comment per se,but rather a request for your advice on something.
    So if you would rather not post this to your comments,I certainly understand.
    I live in Israel and I hear the Arabic language all around me.
    To be perfectly honest,it sounds beautiful to my ears and my mind.
    This may well sound odd coming from a religious Jew that lives in Israel. But in my mind it should not.
    I want so very much to learn Arabic,however I am somewhat perplexed as where to start.
    To be more specific, should I dive into MSA or levantine or Egyptian….?
    Or is it more advisable to do both,meaning the modern standard (which I understand is necessary for reading writing TV etc…) AND the local dialect ( levantine I think?).
    Anyway I do hope to hear from you regarding this matter ,as I think that you have a good grasp on what is practical,considering you educational background as well as your travels to different countries where different dialects are spoken.

    In closing I want to say that I thoroughly enjoy your blog.
    Your latest “refacing” was indeed a pleasure.I only wish I had been in Jerusalem when you were there so I could have meet you personally.

    Warmest regards,
    דוד טוביה

  24. i just left a comment, i have a picture that would be perfect for your website….please let me know if you want me to send it to you….KD

  25. I found this blog sorta by chance, and I think it’s great. (I want to email you about something, but I’m having trouble finding an address….)

  26. I came across your site and I saw your artwork ‘ lila’s tattoo. ‘ ..I was curious as to if you could lead me in the right way to find more art like that (yours or not). Thanks….

  27. Hi Josh,

    Great blog! I came across your site when searching for Arabic calligraphy artists. I am currently looking into a tattoo based on an Abd El Halim phrase in the style of Hassan Massoudy’s art. Is there an artist you could recommend for me to hire?

    Thanks,
    Dennis

  28. Dear Josh:

    I really like your blog. You also have a wonderful girlfriend! (She is a fantastic photographer.) Please tell Rachel Clinch Steward sends his best regards.

    Take care,

    Clinch Steward
    Ann Arbor, Michigan

  29. This is a wierd one…I’m part Lebanese, but unfortunately any of my family that spoke Arabic have passed. I’m redecorating and want to put “Live, Love, Laugh” on a wall in my library. But want to be sure I got it right. Is this correct? نعيش الحب الضحك

  30. Dear Josh:
    I love to see the works and interests you own. What you love is like just what I do: art, language, culture, and anythings in aesrhetical field. It’s nice to know you. I suggest you –if you wish — to look at Javaness rich cultural heritage. I think Javaness philosophy is also interested and very very exotic- it too relates much with Islam. It’s a GREAT CULTURE that’s forgotten in international’s eyes.

    I wish we can meet physically, in the future (Hey, what about visiting Bali Island, it’s about an hour from my home in Java Island).

    I also have a dream about peace in Jerusalem. I plan to write it on a novel.

    Good luck, good reading, good teaching, good learning…

    Raden Erwan
    Indonesia

  31. Hey There,
    I stumbled upon your blog while looking for information on the artist Sara Rahbar – and have really appreciated all the fascinating information I have found here so far. It has been helpful to me as an anthropology student with a regional focus on the mid east and art especially. Thanks ;)

  32. Josh, if you really want some intrigue and exploring try to do a photo essay of the Jews stuck in Afghanistan, known as Pathans or Pashtuns in the NE area and along the Indus River. I did one post on them, and am preparing a sequel.

  33. Dr. Bailey is my dear old friend and mentor from TAU but the e-mail I have for him at trincoll no longer works. Can you please ask him to contact me or kindly let me have whatever new e-mail you have for him?

    Thanks —

    Emanuel in Montreal
    (Turbani mani Turbani, wa’uMzeini kanta’arfeini!)

  34. Josh- it’s been awhile, but I’m glad it looks like you’re still making it happen and having fun the whole time. Every once in awhile I stumble across that photo of you sitting in the grass in Jerusalem, belly laughing, and it always makes me smile. Hope to run into you again someday, take care!

  35. Josh-

    Found your site when I searched for a quote from the book “The Daily Coyote” which led me to a blog Melle.ca, and I saw you comment…another non-belonger, connecting, searching. Looking forward to reading more from your blog and reading about your travels and experiences.

    Not sure if your replies allow HTML, but here is a link to the post I wrote about belonging. Is belonging all it’s crack up to be?” If HTML doesn’t work here, sorry for the mess of random symbols or the blank spot!

    Lindsay

    PS..Isn’t Arabic a cool language?!

  36. I need to spell STRENGTH n arabic but I dont trust some of the sites can u send it to me in Arabic…

  37. hey friend, your stuff is really cool. would u like to become a member of our face group – arabists and friends of the middle east and central asia (AFMECA), i’m the administrator and creator of some web sites on culture, art and many other stuff in bulgaria. will be glad to meet u

  38. I have always loved Arabic language and parts of the culture. I love your website. I am semi-nomadic myself and am inspired by your website. Thank you :)

  39. Dear Josh,
    I am working on a tv documentary series on world calligraphy and am interested in the roll of islamic calligraphy in contemporary society. Will be in Istanbul for research in April. Can you help me with contacts there? And can you give me some idea of why you have been drawn to Islamic calligraphy? I know an excellent Western calligrapher in Ann Arbor, Susan Skarsgaard. Have you met her?
    Kind regards, Brody Neuenschwander

  40. Hey man! I really dig what you are doing and just want to let you know that your lifestyle is very inspiring! Much love and respect from a brazilian gypsy. Peace! Fabricio (Sao Paulo, Brazil)

  41. Dear Josh,
    I’m so sorry for your loss. I’m a former doctoral student of Vic’s. You have an amazing blog. Please drop me a line because I have distant ties to Yemen that I’d like to share with you.

  42. Hi!
    I want to get a tattoo with the word “strength” in arabic. I dont trust the internet that much so I wanted to know if you can help me with that. I also want the word “serenity” but I’m not so sure how to combine them.
    Let me know. Thanx.

  43. Are you in the Chicago area? I have a nice design that a friend of mine did who is a professional artist. Let me see if I can attach a link..

    http://picasaweb.google.com/111241614535401523994/20100425?authkey=Gv1sRgCNG9r4OanqTwLQ#5464089837955216034

    The photo is not so great. I need to get a vector version or some ideas. FYI if you were in Yemen you might have met Ambassador Bodine who is a relative.

  44. Hello! I’m putting together a foreign policy magazine cover as a first year anniversary present. Would it be possible for you to send me a digital calligraphy of “peace at last” in arabic? My email is attached so we can talk about prices.

  45. Ive found a grand new inspiration in this blog of yours… I just set myself up here, how can I follow you or friend you or whatever the hell you do here to stay connected?!

  46. Hello. I am a person who very much cares about friendship and in particular brotherhood. Do you think you could write the word Ukhuwwah (brotherhood) in arabic calligraphy. I would love to see it. Thank you friend.

  47. hi…did you remember me??

  48. Josh really interesting stuff. Love the design of your site.

    I posted your West Bank map on my site: you might be interested: I am trying to cover all aspect of conflict as creatively and as wide rangingly as I can at:

    http://www.creativeconflictwisdom.wordpress.com

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  50. [...] http://joshberer.wordpress.com/about/ [...]

  51. Hello Josh,
    to have a biography close to yours one has really to have prescribed from heaven..and just to work for it on one’s own – just the way you did. I’m immensely impressed. You seem to be an allround artist and explorer. I wonder why you especially focused on this topic and why you have Yemenite jewellery instruments from your father – was he Yemenite?
    You set a beautiful role model – unreacheable, but still great – for people who think they’ve been born in wrong time and wanna do something about it. I for instance, I only dream and read books ond don’t put my feet up and get going – for example to Yemen…
    When did you start with all that – at what age? Would be interesting to know.
    Anyways – good luck in every way possible.
    ps..: have you heard of the researcher Aviva Klein-Franke? She’s been involved in Yemenite Jewish studies for quite a long time…

    Chaya

  52. hi jOsh, i would like to get a tattoo saying “if love be rough with you, be rough love” in arabic. i have got an arabic person to do the translation for me, but as it will be on me for life i would like to double check with you. can u possibly e-mail me what you think it should look like? just so i can be 100% sure. thanks again, sarah

  53. Hello Josh,
    I will also be starting grad school this Fall. I’ll start my M.A. in Folklore with an emphasis on Northern Mexico and Southwestern U.S. music and dance. I received an offer through the Department to apply to be your roomate. I would have really liked to move in with you since it seems we share several key interests like sustainabilty, travel of course, and music. But unfortunately I already signed a lease elsewhere. Nevertheless, I hope we can meet sometime.
    Let me know. All the best,

    Julian Carrillo

  54. Am enjoying the output of your life and your mind! Great stuff on your blog!
    jaina mishra
    wovensouls.wordpress.com

  55. hi josh shokran for write abaut arabic tattoo,im a beginner tattoo artist and i find u finnaly!sure u wil help my friends to dont make mistake with arabic tattoo bcz find the wrong translation is very easy as u know.anyway sorry for my english,i wish to learn arabic better than my english ahahahahah!!also if u know some one can write tattoo 4 me and my friend send it to me the link please..

  56. i am so glad i came across your website.i was doing some research on arabic poetry & writing for my upcoming tattoo & i seen the difference of yur writing & the computer writing.(yurs is way better) i feel sorry for those datt wentt by what the computer “says” haha

  57. Josh,

    Where do you live these days? I’m about 20 minutes away from Ann Arbor, MI. I’ve studied a little Islamic calligraphy (started in Ann Arbor actually), and would like to meet up, perhaps learn something from you.

    Please e-mail me, let me know. We seem to share a few yearnings.

  58. heyy ive been online for hours trying to find a tattoo i want to get in arabic and looks like you know a lot about it. Im trying to get “forever sisters” if you could help me out i would really appretiate it. Please email me at caroborrero1288@hotmail.com Thank you

  59. Dear Josh Berer,

    We would like to invite Ammar Basha to enter his film, Breaking the Silence, into the Australian refugee Film Festival. The festival showcases 10-15 short films based on refugee issues. The Australian Refugee Film Festival is held in Sydney, Australia and coincides with Refugee Week, June 19th – 25th. It would be great if you could help us contact him.

    For further information regarding the Australian Refugee Film Festival:
    – visit our website http://www.australianrefugeefilmfestival.org/ or
    – email films@australianrefugeefilmfestival.org.au.

    We hope you will help us in our mission and we look forward to hear from you soon.

    Regards,
    Catherine
    (Australian Refugee Film Festival Coordinator)

  60. hi, i’m french documentalist. i like your website and i want tell you some help if you can… I am seeking calligraphy about “exile” and other one about “fight”… if you have some calligraphy in picture, foto,etc..with this words o topics can you send me please…
    sorry for my english… i don’t speak very well…. thanks..
    benjamin

  61. Hi there. Very interested in how I can get hold of the pens you use. I live in south Africa so I know I can’t buy it here. Any ideas of where to get them….the reed pens..thanks so much for a great blog.

  62. Great tattoo work!! I am looking for a simple tattoo on my inner wrist, work in the govt’ contracting world so I will have to cover it up with a watch during the week. What I’m looking for is something that says “Uum Ramez” basically for me as my 1stborn is Ramez. I have it written out in arabic but if there is an artistic take or way to write it out, I’d love to see it.

    Keep up with everything you’re doing, extremely talented!!

  63. Josh, I love what you are doing here, and hope it becomes a roaring success for you, both economically and more importantly, personally fulfilling.

    I was a soldier for nearly thirty years and most of that time was in the military intelligence field as an Arabic linguist. I was very fortunate indeed to travel through much of the middle east, north Africa, and beyond. I have dabbled off and on with Arabic calligraphy, and much admire your skill. I would like to ask if you have any leads or references for me as to where I can locate and purchase some reasonably priced books/how to’s on Arabic calligraphy? I look forward to hearing back from you.

    Kendall

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  65. got the tattoo done last night! I love it! thank you so much. I live TARAB.

    http://www.facebook.com/dana.dahliadance#!/photo.php?fbid=10150278544274858&set=at.448803624857.243886.520724857.657273691&type=1&theater

  66. Need your help! I am planning on getting a tattoo in Arabic calligraphy . I’ve asked friends on how to write a name n every friend gives me a different thing. Plz help me.

  67. I love this! were you always artistic or did you have a lot of practice? I’m interested in Arabic Calligraphy but I’m not too artistic but I’m willing to learn do I have a chance? Do you know of any place in Seattle that teaches Arabic and Arabic Calligraphy?

  68. Thank you for an interesting web site.
    I’m interested in the map

    Do you know who has produced it?
    Is it public domain? i e publishable at Wikipedia

    /Göran

  69. Just returned from a trip to Turkey and found your site while hunting for Islamic calligraphy sites. I look forward to seeing more.

  70. I just like this site. really beautiful calligraphy. U do ottoman turkish callyraphy too? if yes can u write me down “Ja deulet basuma ia güzgün desüme”

  71. Hi Josh

    I’m a beginner in learning arabic calligraphy in Singapore. I like the blue qalam box that you have. Can let me know where I can purchase them.

    Thanks.

    MG

  72. Hi,
    I’m Frederic from Brussels, Belgium.
    I would like to have my daughters name translated in ‘diwani’ style.
    I’ve had several propositions but until now i’m not satified.
    Can translate my daughtersname in ‘diwani’ calligraphy?
    If you can let me know how you would like to proceed.
    If you want i can sent you the translation that i like the most until now.
    Looking forward hearing from you,

    Frederic

  73. Hi Josh,

    I am writing from Boston and teach Islamic art and architecture to art students. I appreciate the richness of your site! I just wanted to ask the source of your image which looks like Maxfield Parrish at the top of this page.

    All the best in the New Year to you and to our world!

    Elizabeth

  74. Assalam aleikum Josh!

    Thank you for this reed pen instruction. My next pen will be much better.

    Do you know of any Syriac, or other Aramaic, calligraphers?
    I have been studying several Syriac Estrangela manuscripts with a view to reviving this script.

    It would be great to get in touch with others having this interest.

    Ma’assalama.

    Alain Godbout

  75. This is a great blog. Thank you so much for all the photos from Yemen. You have really impressed me. All the best from an anthropologist from Poland. – Peter.

  76. Dear Josh,

    I am a native fluent arabic speaker and I would like your input in terms of design for the following phrase below (translates as – “to the end”):

    الى النهاية

    Could you, or perhaps anyone here, please create a few calligraphy-based design ideas for a tattoo I would like on my shoulders (one on each posterior shoulder blade).

    Many thanks and I really do hope this message reaches you,

    Faisal
    falmayahi@googlemail.com

  77. Hello Josh, I am interested in having a framed 8.5×11 made with the Al Fatiah. Please contact me when you have time. Thank you!

  78. Hey there, was searching Arabic calligraphy tattoos and stumbled upon your blog/site. Just wanted to drop a line and say kudos on the work. Also, I’m a photographer (who happens to be Palestinian American) and checked out that link to your girlfriend’s portfolio. Really lovely images.

  79. Visiting Istanbul with my family and interested in calligraphy. Do you have more info on finding Ali and the shops you mention ?
    Thanks!

  80. Hey Josh,
    I was informed by the Lumberjocks.com that you defined me as your woodworking buddy. Thanks for appreciating my woodcarvings. I was curious about you and read your profile there and then went to your site here. I appreciate very much your studies and your journey via several countries in the Middle East and learn deeply the languages and culture. I’m interesting also in languages and culture/folklore but I didn’t go so deep as you. The far I went is to visit countries for a month each one, learn a little bit about the country, learnt several hundred words in the local language in order to be able to communicate with the local people and took nice photos of the country and the local people (you may see some of them in my Facebook. I live in Meitar, in the Negev, Israel. When you come again to Israel, you are invited to be my guest at my home.

  81. Good morning Josh,

    I found your blog and I’m impressed by the wealth of knowledge you provide on the Arabic-speaking world.

    I’m reaching out because our language-learning software company has a “Yemeni Arabic” (Sana’ani) project, and I was wondering if you could put me in touch with linguists who specialize in English to Sana’ani translations and/or native speakers who might do recording in Sana’ani.

    If possible, I would also like to start a collaboration to alert you of all translation and recording opportunities going forward. Please let me know how we could move forward with this.

    In the meantime, feel free to contact me or send my contact information to anyone who’s interested in working on English > Sana’ani translation projects.

    Best regards,
    Priscilla Colón

  82. Youre’ amazing! I’ve never met any young Caucasians interested in anything Islamic or Arabic before. And the fact that you’re blogging makes it so impressed! :-)

    Mashaallah! Sa’adtu biliqaik ya akhi! :-)

    And now that I’ve found your blog, I must say that I have a joyful ride here. Now I’d like to cordially invite you to visit mine. I write poetry, mostly inspired by Hafez El Syirazi, Jalaluddin Rumi, and Kahlil Gibran, so there are some names you must be familiar with.

    Thank you again, and have a wonderful weekend! :-)

    Subhan Zein

  83. Hey Josh,
    The Owl-shaped calligraphy tattoo is prooving to be quite popular on pinterest (and for a good reason!):

    People have been wondering what it said and I was wondering if you can help us with that? :-)

  84. Morning Josh,
    Im interested in writing my name along with my fiance’s name in a nice style. I have an example of what I want. Can I please get in touch with you by email to send you the example?
    my email is
    a_asad_@hotmail.com
    Thanks in advance
    Ali

  85. Josh,
    My name is Cooper, I have just finished working in Afghanistan. I’m interested to have some calligraphy done for a tattoo not only to pay tribute to an amazing country but also my Afghan and Western friends who I shared some incredible and at times humbling experiences. I speak a bit of Pashto but I think a Tattoo in Dari would be more fitting.

    If you are interested in some work please let me know by email and we can talk more.

    Thanks

    Cooper.

  86. Dear Josh,

    My name is Behzod, and I work for Voice of America uzbek Service. I found your blog and your life and educational experiences related to Central Asia very fascinating.
    I am writing a story about the study of Central Asian culture and languages by western students and scholars.
    I would like to talk to you for my story.
    Can you please contact me via my e-mail address?

    Thank you,
    Behzod

  87. Dear Josh,
    Congratulations for your work! I’ve been Impressed by your “olive tree” with the poem of al-Qasim, travel tickets.

    I have spent some time in middle east and this poem means a lot to me. I’d really like to print your drawing, let’s say in a 1×1.5 meter format.

    Is it possible for you to send me the file with appropriate resolution (black background, white writing)? Of course, with your signature.

    Thank you very much in advance for your kind response.

    Best regards,
    Federica

  88. Hi, i love the tattoo work you’ve done.. i want to ask do you know anyone i can sell a new tattoo kit bought it from the UK to sell it here in syria damascus ??

  89. Dear Mr Berer,

    I am hybrid Arab of Malaysia in South East Asia. My root is of Yemeni Arab who spread across Indian sub-continent to other part of South East Asian territories. I love your works and grateful to found your site. I love to collect data about Yemeni and other Oriental Jews as they are our brothers who live as diaspora across the world. Btw, just informing you. I am using one of the photo in your site for my personal blog for Judaism tradition in Malay. It is for our personal use and for the Malay speaking Jews to learn more about Judaism and our tradition. The credit is all yours and I mention the source so people could also get by to your site and reaching your researches. Sorry if I am not informing you earlier but I am thankful to reach your site through the picture that I googled. Thank you.

  90. hi Josh,
    I love the calligraphy that you do i love arabic calligraphy myself :-) my name is malikah i am 10 years old and i am really interested in your work.do you know any useful links that could help me ?
    thankyou
    Malikah Katayef :-)

  91. Hi there I was wondering if you are still selling your bamboo pens for calligraphy? I’m a student in British Columbia wanting to a do a project on Arabic Calligraphy and I was interested in creating my own piece of art work. Thanks for your time!

  92. interested in estrangella calligrapher for hire and consultant on some ancient language questions in relation to hawks and honeybees. especially ancient honeybees. hebrew honeybees and history. will read your site more later. would like to purchase bamboo calligraphy pens as well.

  93. Hi Josh
    I want to get a tattoo
    I was wondering if you can write 4 words for me?
    PLease email me back
    Thanks

    Kia

  94. Hi josh, you work is fantastic and quite number of my friends like your and they fan of your work. We were wonderig if we could print on a shirts and hoods? Like a design.

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