Title: The Wanderers of the Desert: Nomadic Bedouin Culture
Since middle school at Ross, I have loved to study cultures. I felt passionate about studying cultures, so this project felt appropriate. The Bedouin culture is unknown to many people but have elaborate tradition and fascinating way of life. To display what I discovered about the culture, I chose to write an informative essay describing aspects of life in the desert, write music using instruments and style traditional in Bedouin culture, such as the Rabab, and make an installation of a Bedouin tent in order to show an audience how a tribesman would have lived. I learned a great amount of the culture, and my hope is that I can share the knowledge I've gained with my audience.
When I thought of the idea of studying the
Bedouin culture, I was only thinking about how my favorite topic is cultural
studies. At this earlier time I did not realize the importance of my studies.
In time, with research, I began to see that this is another dying culture,
which has been snuffed out by modern ways. At that point my primary purpose for
the project had turned into a distribution of information so that the
fascinating culture I was studying was not forgotten. In order to accomplish
this goal, I chose to make three separate products to best convey their ways of
life and traditions. Firstly, I wrote an informative essay which covered all of
the standard aspects of their life, including living conditions, the
environment they lived in, how they survived and their traditions that they
base their life around. Next, I chose to make music based off of Bedouin genre
and style with actual Middle Eastern instrument. I did this because I thought
it would display an important aspect of their life that has, over time, taken
influences from all over the world because of the BedouinÕs interaction with
many cultures, having been the guides through the deserts for those travelling
on trade routes, one of the most famous being the Silk Road between China and
Roman Italy. Finally, I chose to make a recreation of a Bedouin tent because so
much of the Bedouins lifestyle and traditions are dependent on the tent. Also,
to show the way in which they lived in the middle of the barren deserts of the
The process was challenging, having to do things that would commonly take me over a month. I had to try and become familiar with Middle Eastern musical style, which is much different from the western style I am familiar with. Also, the Oud was an odd instrument using odd scales and picking technique that took a long time to master. The next major step in the process of my project was gathering the materials for my tent. All of it was not so difficult to come across, except for the fabric, which I had to buy a large roll of and sew together, which was very time consuming. The rest of my process was researching and gathering information for my essay. There were few books dedicated to Bedouin culture, so I had to pull a lot of scattered notes together to finish.
The finished display was a grouping of the three products together. The tent was the primary focus of the display, people going in and around it to see what it was. Along with the tent I made a brochure thatÕs primary purpose was to guide the viewer through the living style of the Bedouin. The essay I made was put on display next to the tent incase anybody wanted to read something more in depth about the people. In the background is the music that I made, setting the Middle Eastern atmosphere to environment, and completing the display.
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"Houses of Hair, Fall 1997,Winter 1998, Volume 14,
Keohane, Alan. Bedouin; Nomads of the Desert.
Losleben, Elizabeth. The Bedouin of the
"Sinai - The Bedouin." Geographia - World Travel
Destinations, Culture and History Guide. 14 Nov. 2009. <http://www.geographia.com/egypt/sinai/
"Sinai - The
"T. E. Lawrence, 'Seven Pillars of
Wisdom', 1926 subscribers' abridgement." Telawrence.net home page. 13 Dec. 2009. <http://telawrence.net/
"The Modern Period." The New Encyclopedia Britannica. 15th ed. Vol. 22.
Community Member (Details)
Ken Dorph was my outside consultant for my
senior project. It was the perfect choice for my project, because he has
experience in the