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Changing Performance Traditions and Bedouin Identity in the North Badiya, Jordan

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Although performance traditions have long been important parts of Bedouin identity in the North Badiya, Jordan, many factors have affected these traditions over the years, especially since the latter part of the twentieth century, resulting in the loss of some genres and the retention of others. This study examines how the traditions that remain, particularly poetry that is spoken or sung to the accompaniment of the rababa, are traditions from the male and public spheres, while the traditions that have been abandoned are those from the female and private spheres. Because of the separation of male/public and female/private realms, the male genres are the only ones that can be seen by outsiders, and thus are selected to be the public face of Bedouin identity.
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Keywords: Bedouin; Jordan; change; identity; performance traditions

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2014

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  • Nomadic Peoples is an international journal published by the White Horse Press for the Commission on Nomadic Peoples, International Union of Anthropological and Ethnological Sciences. Its primary concerns are the current circumstances of all nomadic peoples around the world and their prospects. Its readership includes all those interested in nomadic peoples, scholars, researchers, planners and project administrators.
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