A propos de l'auteur de ce blog

Mehdi Lamloum, bloggeur et Vidéobloggeur depuis 2005. Actuellement directeur de creation dans une agence de communication, base a Kuala Lumpur, Malaisie
Les informations, opinions, réflexions, analyses, conneries, ne représentent que mon avis personnel et n'engagent en aucun cas celui de mon employeur ou de mes partenaires.

Pour me contacter, vous pouvez utiliser mon email me [at] mehdilamloum [dot] com

Contrat Creative Commons
Ce(tte) oeuvre de Mehdi Lamloum est mise à disposition selon les termes de la licence Creative Commons Paternité - Pas d'Utilisation Commerciale - Partage des Conditions Initiales à l'Identique 3.0 Unported.

dimanche 12 juillet 2015

Arab politics, history and stamps

Kuala Lumpur is a city famous for its malls. When the weather is hot, humid and rainy all year long, air conditioned malls are heaven.
My favorite place in KL is a mall but not your usual one. Amcorp Mall is an old mall in Petaling Jaya, not too far from my place and has a great particularity. 
Every weekend the mall hosts a famous flea market where you can find anything you’re looking for: real antics, fake-old things, vinyls in Joe’s Music shop...but still not your usual hipster place. No expensive coffee here. 

I’ve been going to the flea market for a few months, buying different things: Some vinyls, fake DVD’s, vintage stuff and a lot of books.

I noticed few stalls selling stamps and old coins and I’ve been thinking “ who the hell still collect this kind of things?” 
Actually, I knew someone who’s collecting stamps, our Head of Planning, Subramanian Krishnan (you can call him Subu).
During our daily morning coffee chats, we talked about it. Him explaining why people still collect stamps and me being doubtful of the whole thing. It seemed something from the past and I was really surprised it still existed. 
The only thing I could think about when I hear stamps is basically drawing of pictures and flowers. 
I ended up telling him about the few stalls that trade stamps in Amcorp Mall and we agreed to go there together the next Sunday.

That day was a real mind opening for me. While looking at different stamp albums, I came across few stamps from Irak. They were showing some political events that happened in the 60’s.
Subu asked me what was it about it. I had no idea. I actually never heard about these events before. 

I have been trying to learn more about the Arab world’s political history recently, and it have been a quiet tough : watching 3-hours long documentaries, reading 500 pages books about one single era and searching online as much as I could. 

I realised that I could make the whole learning process more fun and more real. And it have been great so far.

I started by going every weekend to Amcorp Mall and asking different dealers about Arab stamps they could have. As it’s not a very popular subject, they didn’t have much of them but the one they had were in mint condition (unused). 
Until I met one seller who told me that I was only the second person asking for that kind of stamps, the first being a student from Oman living in KL.
And It happened that he had boxes and boxes of Arab stamps.

So every weekend, I go straight to his stall and he gives me a big box of stamps and I spend the next hour or so going through them, trying to find the ones related to some political events or leaders in the Arab world between 50’s and 90’s 

I sometimes have to do research on the spot about the stamp, just to make sure that the person on it is related to some political events.

I also have to go through countless stamps about flowers and animals (I’m obviously not a fan), stamps too recent or too old and anything that is actually not related to the topic I’m interested in. 
Week after week, I collected interesting stamps about Iran, Irak, Sudan, Egypt but more importantly I learned so much about Political history. 

Connecting these old pieces of Art with youtube and Wikipedia is actually an incredible learning technique. I still remember the boring history lessons I had in high school and I’m pretty sure they would be more interesting if we used stamps to learn.

Where is this taking me? I’ll keep learning. And start sharing probably by blogging more about it. And maybe one day, I’ll open a museum about the Arab world political history, that you can explore through stamps and link it to resources on other platforms. Maybe.