Middle eastern dating rituals
While fundamentalists tend to grab most of the headlines, throughout the region a growing number of young people are breaking with tradition. In Iran, for example, a recent government survey showed that one in four men between the ages of 19 and 29 had sex before marriage.
Back in Jordan, a wave of child abandonments last year prompted one medical official to call for lifting the ban on abortion in Jordan, a topic so taboo here it's generally considered outside the realm of discussion.
Typically, most of the Arab states of the Persian Gulf, along with parts of Jordan and Iraq, are considered Badow (Bedouins).
Other countries' countrysides such as Palestine, Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Algeria and Tunisia are considered rural cultures. In fact, most of the Arab major cities are recognized with urban cultures, like Jaffa (pre-Israel), Cairo, Jerusalem, Beirut, Baghdad, Alexandria, Damascus, etc.
Upstairs couples mingle on the balcony where it's not uncommon to see a pair steal more than just a friendly kiss.
"It's still a certain part of the community, it's not the masses, but there are enough numbers now for it to be seen," said Madian al-Jazerah, owner of [email protected], a trendy bar in Amman.Tourists do not share the same rights over Jordanian culture. Outward appearance is the one facet of interaction between locals and Western tourists most open to misunderstandings on both sides.A lot of tourists, male and female, consistently flout simple dress codes, unaware of just how much it widens the cultural divide and demeans them in the eyes of local people. With her distinct and humorous storytelling, Soad offers her personal account of courtship in the Middle East. Originally from Egypt, she currently lives in Azerbaijan.Since childhood, I have always dreamt of becoming a NASA astronaut and finding a cure for cancer.