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Arab culture

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					Middle Eastern culture
              Language


                  Arabic
•   Written from right to left
•   The language of the Qu’ran
•   Official language of the majority of
    the region’s countries
•   246 million people in the world
    speak Arabic
       Other languages spoken
•   Persian – Afghanistan, Iran
•   Greek – Cyprus
•   Turkish – Turkey, Cyprus
•   Hebrew – Israel
•   Many other languages and dialects are
    spoken throughout the region
                   Religion
• 292 million Muslims
  (92%)
  – Majority of those
    people are Sunni –
    over 90%
• 12 million Christians
• 5 million Jews –
  almost all in Israel
               Government
• Governments vary in         Hosni
  the Middle East:          Mubarak,
                           President of
• Parlimentary                Egypt
  republics – Algeria,
  Egypt, Lebanon,
  Tunisia, Syria, Iraq,     Ehud
  Libya, Yemen, Israel     Olmert,
                            Prime
                          Minister of
                            Israel
               Monarchies
• Traditional Monarchy
  – Kuwait, Saudi
  Arabia, United Arab
  Emirates, Oman,
  Qatar, Bahrain
                         King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia


• Consitutional
  Monarchy – Jordan
  and Morocco


                            King Abdullah II of Jordan
 Popular Middle Eastern Foods




Hummus and pita bread             Falafel
  Made of chickpeas      Also made of chickpeas,
                        often found in pita bread as
                                a sandwich
           Baklava                       Couscous
A desert made of sweet pastry,   Shaped semolina wheat and
nuts, and honey or sugar syrup       covered with flour
                 Arab life
• The area has become urbanized and
  people are leaving their villages, farmers,
  and nomads and moved to cities
• Demands for jobs in cities were up,
  especially in the oil industry
• 1960 – 25% of people lived in cities
• 1990s – 58 % live in cities
• Est. 2015 – 70% live in cities
           Arab dress - women
• Women generally cover
  their heads, hair, and
  sometimes faces with a
  scarf or veil
• Muslims believe that        Hijab – head scarf
  covering those parts of
  the body is pleasing to
  God
• This might be optional or
  required depending on
  where you live

                              Fully veiled woman
           Arab dress - men

• Dress for men varies from
  traditional robes and
  headdresses to western
  dress like jeans and suits
• Headdress patterns might
  indicate which tribe, clan,
  or family the wearer
  comes from
• Checkered headresses
  can show government
  and participation in the
  Hajj
                 Homes
• Homes vary in the Middle East just like
  homes in the US
• Vary from one room to multiple room
  dwellings
• Walls are often made of mud mixed with
  chaff from wheat and left the mud color
• Roofs tend to be flat because of the lack of
  rain
                Education
• Also varies by country, literacy rate varies
• Typically stresses memorization
Examples:
• In Egypt, school is required from ages 6-
  15. After that, students continue based on
  ability
• Public colleges and universities are free

                    Cairo University, the largest university in Africa
    Education in Saudi Arabia
• Schools are segregated by sex – schools
  are either all boys or all girls
• They follow the same curriculum and take
  the same exams
• Students at all schools take religious
  education classes
• Education is free but not required
                   A university in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
      Music
• Classical Arab music
  is popular
• Popular music today
  includes Arabic pop,
  Arabic R&B and hip
  hop


                         Um Kulthoum is one of
                         the most popular Arab
                            artists of the 20th
                                 Century

				
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