Tuesday, May 07, 2013

News at Eleven: [Clinton] Bailey's monumental work Bedouin Poetry

from Sinai and the Negev turns this perception on its head and shows that survival is not only economic but also social, spiritual, psychological and aesthetic. Poetry was for the Bedouin a counter to the stark harshness of the desert: it served as an expression of emotion as well as a practical way of passing a message, easier to remember since it was in rhyme. It was also a vehicle for celebrating traditional Bedouin traits--extreme generosity, hospitality, bravery and honour.

Over two decades, from 1967 to 1988, Bailey recorded 700 Bedouin poems recited around desert campfires.

from The Hindu: Poems on the sand


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