Qantara review 2014
Your favourite articles of the year

This year, roughly 450 English-language articles were published on These articles covered a huge variety of topics from the civil war in Syria, the rise of IS, and the Gaza conflict to elections in Tunisia, Turkey, India and Egypt. We also took a closer look at Islamophobia in Germany and worldwide, integration in Europe, and women's rights and freedom of speech in the Islamic world, not to mention a fascinating and colourful range of topics from the world of culture

The list of topics goes on and on. But what articles were most popular with our readers? Here, in descending order, we give you the ten most widely read articles published on the English version of in 2014.

This is what our statistics tell us. But what do you think? Is your favourite piece in there? Thank you for your support and loyalty in 2014 and Happy New Year!

No. 10

Supporters of the neo-fascist CasaPound movement in Italy (photo: imago)

The Syrian conflict

A red-brown alliance for Syria

Neo-Nazis, Stalinists, Catholic fundamentalists and pacifists may seem like strange political bedfellows, but they have found common ground in a diffuse brand of anti-imperialism. This left-wing/right-wing alliance's online campaigning and its active support for the Assad regime have led to a lack of solidarity with the Syrian people not only in Italy but elsewhere in Europe too. By Germano Monti

No. 9

Amos Oz (photo: picture-alliance/ZB)

Interview with Amos Oz

"For Israel, it is a lose-lose situation"

Israel's ground offensive against Gaza is justified but excessive, says Amos Oz in this interview with Dennis Stute. However, the Israeli writer is also critical of the Hamas strategy of attacking Israel from within civilian areas

No. 8

The Indonesian writer Andrea Hirata poses with the German translation of his book "The Rainbow Troops" (photo: picture-alliance/dpa)

Andrea Hirata's novel "The Rainbow Troops"

One novel; two very different versions

Andrea Hirata's novel "The Rainbow Troops" is the first Indonesian novel to become an international bestseller. Interestingly, the version available outside Indonesia is very different to the one familiar to Indonesian readers. Bettina David explores why

No. 7

Demonstration against "Daesh" (Islamic State) in Kabul (photo: Hambastagi)

The genesis of Islamic State

A new chapter in the decline of the Arab world

IS is a child of the late cold war and at the same time the beginning of a total war against the countries of the Arab East. It is the consequence of a collapse of political, moral and social values in the region, writes the Lebanese author Elias Khoury

No. 6

Daniel Barenboim (photo: Santiago Perez)

Interview with Daniel Barenboim

"The world is suffering from a lack of leadership"

In conversation with Maria Santacecilia, the star conductor and co-founder of the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, Daniel Barenboim, analyses the consequences of the aggravated Israeli-Palestinian conflict and its effects on his orchestra, which celebrates its fifteenth anniversary this year

No. 5

Couples on a bridge (photo: Samuli Schielke)

Love in Egypt

"Does love as it is here exist in Europe?"

Three ethnologists – a Finn, a German and a Swiss – set out to research the laws of love in Egypt. Their work shows one thing above all else: love is an obsession in the land of the Nile – and quite complicated too. By Iris Mostegel

No. 4

A boy salvages belongings from a burned-down building in Htan Kone village in Myanmar's northern Sagaing region on 25 August 2013 (photo: Reuters)

Anti-Muslim violence in Myanmar and Sri Lanka

Surge of radical Buddhism in South Asia

Nationalist Buddhist monks in Myanmar and Sri Lanka are playing a key role in instigating hatred and provoking violence towards the Muslim minorities in both countries, claiming that such action is necessary in order to protect Buddhist race and culture. By Roma Rajpal Weiß

No. 3

Turkish riot police in clouds of tear gas in Istanbul during the move to clear Gezi Park on 15 June 2013 (photo: Reuters)

Culture in Turkey before and after Gezi

The end of Cool Istanbul

By bursting the bubble of mainstream discourse, there is no doubt that the Gezi protests transformed the horizon of grassroots political praxis in Turkey. Should we expect an equally drastic change in the domain of culture and the arts? After Gezi, is it still possible for the cultural industry to cling on to the easily marketable "self-Orientalising" currency that has been so fashionable over the past 10 years? By Mutlu Yetkin

No. 2

Raji Sourani (photo: Tom Knutson/Right Livelihood Foundation)

Interview with Raji Sourani in Gaza

"We are just soft targets: we are very cheap"

Raji Sourani is a human rights lawyer and founder of the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights, which documents and investigates human rights violations in the Occupied Territories. Jailed on six occasions for his work, Sourani is staying put in Gaza at the moment, and continuing to work under siege. He tells Roma Rajpal Weiss that people there have lost all hope

No. 1

Abdullah Hamidaddin wearing his daughter's abaya (photo: Abdullah Hamidaddin)

The hijab

Power and the headscarf

Abdullah Hamidaddin, a writer and commentator on religion and the Middle East, wore his daughter's hijab to remind people that the hijab was originally an expression of power, and to point out that if women had ruled, things might have been very different

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