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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 25 June 2018

The opening of the Louvre Abu Dhabi puts the arts on a pedestal

Readers discuss the arts, Indian politics and Jerusalem

The opening of the Louvre Abu Dhabi has opened up a whole new cultural calendar in the capital. Christopher Pike / The National
The opening of the Louvre Abu Dhabi has opened up a whole new cultural calendar in the capital. Christopher Pike / The National

The opening of the Louvre Abu Dhabi is a grand step towards celebrating art as a vital and concrete aspect of society (Louvre Abu Dhabi teaches us to celebrate our diversity and common humanity, not our differences, December 11). More importantly, the opening of the art museum has helped break a dated taboo in the Arab world. In most regional countries, the sciences are considered to be the only worthy fields of study. Gradually but surely, children are shamed into believing that non-science subjects are dispensable, especially when scores in science subjects affect overall grades more heavily than the arts-based ones. I spent my ninth grade year in a school in Lebanon, during which we all studied the same subjects. By the 10th grade, as is the case with all Arab countries, we had to choose between going into the science or the humanities sector. If you ended up in the former, you felt proud whereas if you chose humanities, you were made to feel inadequate. If this does not change, it means that those with a gift for art will never be able to achieve their full development potential. Youth are often forced into a major they don’t enjoy simply because it is more socially acceptable. This is why with the opening of the Louvre Abu Dhabi brings a big chance for us to end the stereotypes associated with the humanities.

Einas Alhamali, Abu Dhabi

US veto of UN resolution will spell more trouble

I refer to your article Washington vetoes Jerusalem resolution amid Palestinian fury (December 19). After seeing so many reactions and protests around the globe, the UN resolution offered a glimmer of hope. The rejection of the vote will pave the way for further hostilities.

Name withheld by request

India's Congress party must change to win

I refer to your article Modi's party manages to hold on his home state (December 19). Even though prime minister Narendra Modi’s party has won the two state elections, the sweep of the Congress party in his home state of Gujarat cannot be taken lightly. If anything, the results prove that Congress can come back to power. However, for that to happen, their strategy and corrupt top and middle level officials must be rooted out forever.

The generational shift marked by the advent of the young Rahul Gandhi shouldn't be overstated, nor should it be construed as a warning to older party members. Still, it is time for the century-old party to adopt a more aggressive and less traditional approach in order to attract a strong voter base among the younger generation. Above all, the party should exhibit more maturity when dealing with any personal attacks and should serve as role models to the educated younger generations in order to teach them how to wisely handle national challenges. Corruption is a deep-rooted issue in the party and must be scrunitised. In short, the Congress party must change if it is to succeed in the 2019 general election.

Ramachandran Nair, Oman

Despite the fact Rahul Gandhi's party got more seats compared to the previous election and Narendra Modi's party did not score a landslide victory, securing his party's future ahead of the 2019 general election is prestige enough. We must concede that his home state helped his party survive for the 27th year running.

K Ragavan, India