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People of Jordan

April 30, 2012

People of Jordan makes for outstanding hospitality


One of the best things about a trip to Jordan are the warm, welcoming people known to give travelers some of the most generous hospitality in the world. The majority of Jordan's 4.4 million people are of Arabic decent with most being of Bedouin origin and Muslim, but about 6% are Christian. There are other minorities as well from Russial, Armenia and Palestine.

You see people dressed in western clothes everywhere in Jordan, but as a photographer, I am more interested in capturing the people who dress in traditional clothes. One of the things we like to do is get a traditional outfit for our child to help her connect to a culture and she wore a Bedouin outfit when we visited Petra.

You can tell a lot about Jordanian culture by the food and markets and we love the colorful street life in Jordan. We stopped at a small market along the road in a rural area and met this man. I thought in many ways he represents the spirit of Jordan.

What do you think? Do Americans have false impressions of Arabic dress and culture?

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Huguenot

I will go to Jordan this August and spend 3 months there! I don't really know what to expect but am looking forward to it! I do think that Americans have a very narrow picture of the Middle East, and of Arabs in particular. Those views are typically either very negative or they think it sounds very exotic and romantic; but either way, it is a very narrow perspective. Many people I have spoken with didn't even know Jordan was a country! I had to tell them about Petra, and they all say "Oh, Indiana Jones! OK!"
hehe! It is not their fault, they just don't know. It seems so far away.

Jeanne @soultravelers3

Lucky you, Huguenot! I think you will have a wonderful time in Jordan and it is more diverse than you will expect.

I think you are right about American prejudices about the Middle East and Arabs.

We're in Malaysia right now for our kidlet's Mandarin and I have had some American's who have had great prejudice about it because it is a Islamic country.

I think there is quite a bit of fear and prejudice in America about Islamic countries...probably some from 911.

It is hard to escape the prejudice ...that is why travel is so important. We actually had a bit of fear of the unknown before we went to Morocco, Turkey and Jordan...but they were three of the most friendly countries that we have been to.

Barbara

I'm not sure about all Americans, but I'm American and when I was in Egypt I wore the traditional abaya -- and LOVED it. A wonderful experience on so many levels. I wonder -- would you buy and try to wear the traditional Jordanian dress and see what your impressions are?

Cheers!

Shanna Schultz

I have often wondered about Jordan, and whether its stereotype as a slightly scary place to travel has any truth...it is unfortunate that people lump all Arabic speaking countries in their minds together as "unsafe" when this is not always the case...

Amy

I have a friend from Jordan and has invited us to go there! Now just to gather the $! He said it is safe-media displays worse incidents. Yes, it is Americanized, which for me seems discouraging. I want to see countries that are traditional.

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