giovedì 21 marzo 2013

Mothers day in the Arab world

Did you know that today (21st of March) is the first day of spring and in most Arab countries it's an occasion of celebration, it's the "Mother's Day" or "Eid Al Omm". 

The idea began with brothers Mustafa and Ali Amin, the prominent journalists who founded the newspaper Akhbar Al-Yom. One day, Ali Amin received a letter from a mother complaining about her children, and then another mother showed up at Mustafa Amin's office to ask him to tell her story. Widowed at a young age, she had raised her children alone, and now that they were all married she rarely saw them.
The brothers decided to start a national campaign. Ali Amin had a daily column entitled Fikra (Idea) at the time, and he wrote that other countries had mother's days, so why didn't Egypt? Readers of the column responded enthusiastically, and a later poll showed that the preferred day was 21 March. The idea was first ridiculed by president Gamal Abdel Nasser but he eventually accepted it and Mother's Day was first celebrated on 21 March 1956. The practice has since been copied by other Arab countries.

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