Understanding Arabs: A Contemporary Guide to Arab Society

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  • Edition: 5th
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 4/16/2012
  • Publisher: Consortium Book Sales & Dist

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The Definitive Guide to Understanding Arab Culture Now Completely Updated with Expert Arab Spring Coverage and Insight

Author Biography

Dr. Margaret Nydell is a widely respected scholar and professor of Modern Standard Arabic, Arabic dialectology, and many Arabic regional dialects. She was an Arabic linguist for the Foreign Service Institute and the U.S. Department of State, and has directed the latter's School of Advanced Arabic Training in Tunisia. The author of ten books, she currently lectures on Arab cultural orientation for numerous government and private organizations. Dr. Nydell holds a master's degree in Arabic and a PhD in applied linguistics, both from Georgetown University. She has lived and worked in Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, and Cairo.

Table of Contents

A Message from the Authorp. xi
The Arab Springp. xii
Terrorismp. xiv
Looking to the Futurep. xx
Map of the Arab Worldp. xxii
Prefacep. xxiii
Introduction: Patterns of Changep. xxix
Modernizationp. xxix
The Arab Human Development Reportsp. xxxiv
The Effects of Changep. xxxiv
The Muslim Viewp. xxxvi
Islamic Educationp. xxxvii
Facing the Futurep. xxxviii
Beliefs and Valuesp. 1
Basic Arab Values and Attitudesp. 3
Basic Arab Self-Perceptionsp. 4
Friends and Strangersp. 5
The Concept of Friendshipp. 5
Reciprocal Favorsp. 5
Introductionsp. 7
Visiting Patternsp. 8
Business Friendshipsp. 10
Office Relationsp. 11
Criticismp. 12
Intermediariesp. 13
Private and Public Mannersp. 14
Emotion and Logicp. 17
Objectivity and Subjectivityp. 17
Fatalismp. 18
What Is Reality?p. 18
The Human Dimensionp. 20
Persuasionp. 21
Getting Personalp. 23
Personal Questionsp. 23
Sensitive Subjectsp. 24
Social Distancep. 25
Gesturesp. 27
Namesp. 28
Men and Womenp. 33
Social Interactionp. 33
Displaying Intimacyp. 35
The Status of Womenp. 35
Women's Right to Votep. 38
Women in Government Positionsp. 39
Women's Power in the Familyp. 39
The Headscarf and the Veilp. 40
Polygamyp. 43
Traditional Gender Rolesp. 44
Western Womenp. 45
Looking Toward the Futurep. 46
Social Formalities and Etiquettep. 47
Hospitalityp. 47
Time and Appointmentsp. 49
Discussing Businessp. 50
Sharing Mealsp. 51
Smokingp. 54
Rules of Etiquettep. 55
The Social Structurep. 59
Social Classesp. 59
Image and Upper-Class Behaviorp. 60
Dealing with Service Peoplep. 61
The Role of the Familyp. 63
Family Loyalty and Obligationsp. 63
Relations Among Family Membersp. 65
Marriagep. 67
Divorcep. 68
Child-Rearing Practicesp. 69
Talking About Your Familyp. 70
Religion and Societyp. 73
Religious Affiliationp. 73
Religious Practicesp. 73
The Religion of Islamp. 75
Sunni and Shiap. 79
The Sharia, Islamic Lawp. 79
The Qur'an and the Biblep. 81
Passages from the Qur'anp. 84
Communicating with Arabsp. 87
Varieties of Arabicp. 88
The Superiority of Arabicp. 89
The Prestige of Classical Arabicp. 90
Eloquence of Speechp. 91
Speech Mannerismsp. 93
Pleasant and Indirect Responsesp. 94
The Power of Wordsp. 94
Euphemismsp. 95
The Written Wordp. 96
Proverbsp. 97
Islamic Fundamentalism (Islamism)p. 99
Definitions and Numbersp. 99
Jihadp. 104
Islamists and Muslim Societyp. 105
Mainstream Muslimsp. 108
Anti-Americanismp. 111
Reasons for Arab Angerp. 113
Arab/Muslim and Some Western Viewsp. 113
Some American Viewsp. 116
They Hate Our Freedom, Values, Way of Lifep. 116
They Hate Our Successp. 117
They Don't Know Enough About Usp. 117
Anti-Americanism Is an Excusep. 119
We Share a Long History of Hatredp. 119
Arab/Muslim Views on American Culturep. 121
Views on Western-Style Democracyp. 122
Islamp. 124
Anti-Islam Commentsp. 124
Defense-of-Islam Commentsp. 125
Arabs and Muslims in the Westp. 127
Arabs in the United Statesp. 127
Muslims in the United States and Canadap. 128
Muslims in Europep. 130
The Image of Arabs and Muslimsp. 134
In Americap. 134
In Europep. 138
The Future of Islam in the Westp. 142
The Arab Countries, Similarities and Differences: The Arab Countries in Africap. 145
The Maghribp. 148
Moroccop. 149
Algeriap. 152
Tunisiap. 154
Libyap. 157
The Nile Valleyp. 160
Egyptp. 160
Sudanp. 164
The Arab Countries in the Centerp. 169
The Levantp. 169
Lebanonp. 170
Syriap. 173
Palestinian Territoriesp. 176
Jordanp. 181
Iraqp. 184
The Arab Countries in the Arabian Peninsulap. 189
Saudi Arabiap. 190
Yemenp. 194
The Arabian Gulf States (Persian Gulf)p. 198
Kuwaitp. 199
Bahrainp. 201
Qatarp. 203
The United Arab Emirates (UAE)p. 205
Omanp. 207
Conclusionp. 211
Appendix: The Arabic Languagep. 213
Colloquial Arabic Dialectsp. 213
Attitudes Toward Dialectsp. 215
The Structure of Arabicp. 216
Transcriptionp. 217
Arabic Writingp. 218
Calligraphy As an Art Formp. 220
Social Greetingsp. 220
Notesp. 223
Bibliographyp. 247
Indexp. 265
About the Authorp. 277
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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