Libya is an example of how the Berber, Arab and black African inhabitants of North Africa were brought together by the artificial national boundaries imposed by colonial regimes; these ethnic divisions continue to cause friction within the country today. The country went through a major upheaval over the course of 2011 as the Arab Spring protests in other countries prompted an armed conflict in Libya, which eventually resulted in the ousting of Colonel Gaddafi. The political future is far from certain in Libya, but there is hope that these dramatic and violent changes will result in more self-determination for the Libyan people.
Historically and culturally Libya is a Maghreb country dominated by the Saharan desert. There are still various Greek and Roman ruins in Libya, which connect it to Mediterranean, as much as Middle Eastern of African history. Writer Ahmed Fagih is one of Libya’s greatest success stories in literature, and he continues to produce compelling works such as Homeless Rats. Libyan culture is also largely shaped by the Bedouin poet-singers that have been lived in the country’s hinterland for centuries. Libya’s Ahmed Fakroun is currently one of the biggest names on the music scene, and has been hailed as a pioneer of modern Arabic music.