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South West Asia and North Africa: An Introduction. Algeria. Oasis, Sinai Peninsula. Bedouin People, Lebanon. Qatar. Nile River at Aswan, Egypt photo: Mark Chickering. Medinet Habu Temple, Egypt Photo: Mark Chickering. Rub al Khali Desert, Yemen. Yemen. Photos by Amira Bakr.

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South West Asia and North Africa: An Introduction

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South West Asia and North Africa: An Introduction

Algeria


Oasis, Sinai Peninsula


Bedouin People, Lebanon


Qatar


Nile River at Aswan, Egypt photo: Mark Chickering


MedinetHabu Temple, Egypt

Photo: Mark Chickering


Rub al Khali Desert, Yemen


Yemen


Photos by Amira Bakr

White Desert, Sahara, Egypt


White Desert, Sahara


“Magic Well, White Desert


White Desert


View of the Nile


Red Sea


Sinai Mtns


  • Physiographic Regions

  • There are diverse features interspersed across the Middle East and North Africa:

  • Mountain Ranges

  • Coastal Lowlands

  • Highland Plateaus

  • Floodplains

  • Deserts

  • Two Crucial River Systems:

  • Tigris-Euphrates in Fertile Crescent

  • Nile (White Nile/Blue Nile) in North Africa


  • Middle East and North Africa Elevations


    Generalized Tectonics of the Middle East


    • Climate

    • Variable

    • Orographic Rainfall

    • Largely Arid- consider it’s location around 20-30N


    Climate in Middle East and North Africa


    • Rich Cultural Heritage

    Turkey

    Photo: HadiArslan, Trek Earth

    Domestication of plants and animals led to:

    Agricultural Mini-Systems

    Development of villages

    Extended family systems, reorganization of land, resources

    Specialization in non-agriculture crafts

    Trade Networks


    Ancient Sites of Fertile Crescent


    • Trade Routes in Greco-Roman World


    Recent Empires in the Middle East

    • Ottoman

    • European Mandates and Colonies, 1914- post World War II


    Colonial Regimes in 1914

    Figure 6.11


    • Family

  • Importance of kinship and tribe

  • Family as physical space and functional group

  • Gendered architecture


    • Gender Roles and Gender Spaces

      • public vs private male vs female role of chador or veil

    Women at a mosque, Saudi Arabia

    Photo: Sherine Abdel Rassoul, Trek Earth


    Restrictions on Women

    Figure 6.24


    • Contemporary Issues

  • Most contemporary problems stem from two things:

  • 1. Boundaries and borders created by colonial powers

  • Examples: Israel and Palestine

  • Iraq

  • Sudan – Darfur and South Sudan

  • 2. Strategic importance of region to political and economic interests of core countries

    • Israel and Palestine

    • Iraq, Iran


  • Case Study: Yemen and the Rise of Al-Qaeda

    North Yemen- independent of Ottoman Empire in 1918

    South Yemen- independent of British in 1967

    North and South join in 1990 after 2 decades of fighting

    Socioeconomic protests in 2008 and in 2011, fueled by ‘Arab Spring’

    Elections in Feb 2012, Pres. Salih transferred power to his VP, Hadi


    • Yemen – Economic Information:

    • Low income country

    • Reliant on dwindling oil supplies

    • IMF grant to support economic and political reform

    • GDP – growth rate -2.5 (211 country in world) (2011)

    • GDP per cap PPP - $2500 (181 in world)

    • Unemployment: 35%

    • Poverty rate: 45.2%

    • Household income or consumption by percentage share:

      • lowest 10%: 2.9%

      • highest 10%: 30.8% (2005)

    Frontline Video: Al-Qaeda in Yemen

    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/al-qaeda-in-yemen/


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