Ur­ban­ite con­tem­pla­tion

Kuwait Times - - FROM THE ARABIC PRESS - By Salah Al-Sayer

In the re­cent past, the word ‘bedouin’ was not used the way it is nowa­days in Kuwait. It was sym­bol­i­cally used and had no in­di­ca­tion in real life of desert life be­cause there were no more no­mads trav­el­ling from one place to an­other. Just like sailors stopped sail­ing their dhows af­ter the dis­cov­ery of oil, bedouins stepped down from their camels and lived in ur­ban res­i­den­tial ar­eas in the early stages of Kuwait’s boom, with the spread of ed­u­ca­tion and the avail­abil­ity of job op­por­tu­ni­ties in var­i­ous gov­ern­ment bod­ies, and many more as­pects that are very dif­fer­ent from those known by no­mads.

How­ever, things are not the same nowa­days. The word ‘bedouin’ re­flects and refers to a dif­fer­ent and spe­cial cul­ture that ought to be con­firmed and pro­tected in the minds of some peo­ple. They be­lieve it ought to be sep­a­rated from ur­ban cul­ture, and thus seem like an il­lu­sion­ary trick played by some ma­gi­cians who make au­di­ences imag­ine things that do not re­ally ex­ist. In fact, it is im­pos­si­ble for them to have the same for­ma­tions nowa­days af­ter they po­lit­i­cally, so­cially and eco­nom­i­cally changed and started liv­ing in the out­skirts of mod­ern cities in which cit­i­zen­ship and the rule of the law are more val­ued than tribal fa­nati­cism.

The prob­lem seems more com­plex with younger gen­er­a­tions who keep fa­nati­ciz­ing about bedouin life in a pla­tonic way with merely ‘a rababa (a bowed mu­si­cal in­stru­ment), a cup of cof­fee and a fal­con’, which is to­tally against the bit­ter truth! If we go back to bedouin life nowa­days, many peo­ple will be looted, mur­dered or so­cially ex­cluded.

Fi­nally, I would like to re­mind you of the ‘Please don’t let me down’ call, which is ab­so­lutely against true demo­cratic prac­tices. Some peo­ple tried to jus­tify it as a bedouin value of re­quest­ing as­sis­tance and for­got that the Kuwaiti so­ci­ety na­tion­ally did so by con­sol­i­da­tion, which is far stronger than sec­tar­ian bonds, when Kuwaitis of all sects, tribes and races worked hand in hand to build the third Kuwait wall.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Kuwait

© PressReader. All rights reserved.