About the Bedouin


The Bedouin

The Bedouin (/ˈbɛduɪn/; Arabic: بَدْو‎ badw, singular Arabic: بَدَوِي‎ badawī) are a grouping of nomadic Arab peoples who have historically inhabited the desert regions of North Africa, the Arabian Peninsula, Iraq and the Levant. The English word “bedouin” comes from the Arabic badawī, which means “desert dweller”. Bedouin inhabited territory stretches from the vast deserts of North Africa to the rocky sands of the Middle East. They are traditionally divided into tribes or clans and share a common culture and an economy based on herding camels and goats.

Our main focus is to support a tribe, located in the Negev near the town of Arad. Another couple reach out to another tribe in another location.

Background

During the 1800´s they went through a process of sedentarization when they were encouraged to relocate to villages provided for them. Those who did not move, remain nowadays in unrecognised villages with little or no infrastructure. They mainly speak arabic and their religion is Islam.

Culture and Traditions

Like many nomadic tribes, they live under a code of honour. They also have a well defined hierarchy of loyalty. The Bedouin have their own distinctive culture, rich in oral poetic tradition. Despite high illiteracy, they consider natural events and ancestral traditions important. In social events, men and women don´t mix. Every house has the ¨sheik¨ a place for the men to gather, where women are not allowed.