What are the first things that come to your mind when you hear the word “Arab”? What prejudices could we possibly have?
Let us look more deeply into these thoughts and perhaps clear some things up. •Common misconception about the Arab world: Arabs= Homologous mass= SAME religion, language & customs Nevertheless in REALITY, cultures, religions & dialects differ from country to country and even city to city! •(In reference to the common space & time question)
For Arabs to be an hour late for a visit/appointment NOT uncommon Arabs= Relaxed people punctuality not stressed
In addition Arabs=night culture (due to intense heat of Middle Eastern day) When want to describe something as beautiful: “she is as lovely as the moon” or “he is as handsome as the moon” *Popular name=”Layla”= literally means “NIGHT”!
•Arab identity divided into 3 categories: 1. Family, 2.Honor & 3. Religion 1.Family = Most important parts of Arab culture
Define family as their extended relations
& consider themselves part of it rather than individuals Feel that they owe their grandparents & elderly
Rest homes = almost NON-EXISTENT in the Arab world
They define success by how large families are (not by how rich) 2. Honor = EVERYTHING
Insults are usually taken personally (even though relaxed & easy going people) Also believe Honor demands of them HOSPITALITY
Arab society = Highly communal neighbors consider it DUTY to look for each other Lastly:
2.Religion = major part of every Arabs life
•Other things to remember:
Display of affection between spouses KEPT PRIVATE in public=nonexistent Also laughter & joking (in non private gatherings)=toned down Also arguments kept private
*Privacy is very important
Houses = big solid walls to maintain privacy
Have to guarantee people can’t see neighbors from any part of house -> insuring their privacy When visiting Arab relative/friend standing...