100 Most Powerful Arabs Under 40
Yassin Alsalman (The Narcicyst)
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Yassin Alsalman (The Narcicyst)

Industry: Arts and entertainment

Designation: Rapper

Country: Canada (Iraq)

Country of origin: @TheNarcicyst

Age: 32

Yassin Alsalman, who goes by the name ‘The Narcicyst’ or ‘Narcy’, is an Iraqi-Canadian journalist and hip hop MC, born in Dubai in 1982. Starting his musical work in the group Euphrates, The Narcicyst went solo in 2004. His music often questions the situation of Arab and Muslim migrants and the stereotypes they encounter, and he has not been afraid to tackle taboo subjects such as the Arab Spring and the so-called war on terror.

The Narcicyst has performed with the likes of Public Enemy, Talib Kweli and Kanye West. In 2009, he appeared in the movie ‘City of Life’ playing the role of Khalfan, an Emirati teenager. In 2013, he established a creative agency, The Medium, to provide a platform for independent artistic endeavours of Arab artists.

Alsalman’s parents are originally from Basra, a city located on the Shatt Al Arab river in southern Iraq between Kuwait and Iran, but emigrated to the UAE in the 1970s. When he was five, his family moved to Montreal, Canada, but Alsalman came back to Dubai to complete his high school education. Having returned to Canada in 2000, he earned his bachelor degree in political science and communication studies from Concordia University, and a master’s degree in hip-hop and identity in the Media Studies Department at Concordia University (his thesis project was entitled “Fear of An Arab Planet: The Diatribe of a Dying Tribe”).