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In the midst of the infusion of cultures taking place in the UAE society, Nadia is a perfect example of a blend of tradition and the modern. Aware that western aspects such as music and TV shows are very popular among Emirati youth, Deema believes a person can adopt modern values and yet remain an Arab at heart. “You can see that balance in the buildings that are standing in this country. A tradition as simple as the Emirati dress code for men, which is the ‘kandoura’, impacts the way Al Muhessin acts. “The important thing is to maintain our culture and adapt it to modernisation but not change it,” she explained. Khalifa Al Qamzi, another Emirati, 24, said Emirati traditional values like giving back, respecting others, treating people equally, being family oriented and maintaining one’s identity, are values that stem out of Islam. One major thing to know about Emirati culture is that the people from the UAE thrive on their hospitality. In the midst of the infusion of cultures taking place in the UAE society, Nadia is a perfect example of a blend of tradition and the modern. But their way of preparation is different. It was apt that we were in China, because I was tempted to share one of my favourite quotes by Confucius: “Real knowledge is to know the extent of one’s ignorance.”. Both on your website and other media. Describing her family as Emirati-oriented, Nadia said that things like wearing the abaya were always optional, but other traditions like family gatherings on Friday are indispensable. Another tradition is having the mother or older sister choose an Emirati bride.”. Other traditions such as respecting family members, especially the elderly, have also created a set of rules on how to behave and interact with others in the society. Also men not imposing strict ways of thinking on the women in their family are another modern value.”. They agreed that a balance between both traditional and modern values and practices is a good way to preserve their national identity and at the same time  integrate with the multicultural society of the UAE. The etymology derives from the island of the same name which lies adjacent to Abu Dhabi. Celebrating Emirati and religious occasions such as Eid and Ramadan, Nadia said her family also celebrates Christmas and Thanksgiving. You can manage them any time by clicking on the notification icon. Like so many tourists, and more annoyingly, residents, he said that he was very impressed with the wonderful buildings and development, but was left somewhat empty because he couldn’t see anything of the indigenous culture or history. Hospitality is another Emirati value that Al Shaikh said is shared among all his people. We’ll send you latest news updates through the day. Qamzi said being brought up to respect people especially the elderly and being grounded by family has shaped his personality with qualities he is proud off. “Traditions should not be tampered with because they have been inherited from our grandparents and great grandparents- but they do need to improve in order to adjust with the world.” Wearing his kandoora at least twice a week, the university student said speaking in English and wearing jeans will never change his true beliefs and Emirati identity. I think back to Shanghai, and the top deck of the tour boat on the Huangpu River. For example, fast fo… Preserving his identity by speaking Arabic, for example, has become increasingly difficult as English is the language he has used since he was in university and at his workplace where he mostly deals with expatriates. Cultural Emirati foods include chabab bread, Lugaimat (a famous dessert), machboos, and a few others. ­Anything that wasn’t useful for survival was an unnecessary burden and had no place in their belongings. Putting family first and maintaining his father’s reputation by leading by his example when in public is also an important value. Pointing out that the majority of residents in the UAE are non-Emirati, Omar said it’s easy for Emiratis to adopt certain western values. Ammar Shams has a degree in economics and postgraduate degree in law, with a focus in Islamic law. Listing male and female interaction as one aspect that has developed among Emiratis, Omar believes that language is a factor that should be preserved across time. “Because our culture is also evolving, we can’t be following the exact same traditions that were once followed by our grandparents years and years ago. Just like many others, Omar believes the dress code is something that is quickly being affected. In November 2012, my wife and I were enjoying a holiday in China, and no tour there would be complete without a boat ride on the Huangpu ­River in Shanghai. Al Qazmi believes that by giving back through charity and treating everyone with respect and dignity regardless of their race or religion are good values that keep him grounded and benefit him on a day to day basis. 'Traditional values keep you on the right track'. There is no doubt that the forces of globalisation are making their way into every society, Omar Al Mutawa, a university student, said. “I feel that the Arabic language is something we need to preserve. “In the past there was a lot of segregation. The gentleman in question and I were joined by his daughter, and our conversation turned to politics. He sounded far too passionate about the subject for it to be a passing interest. Al Hajari said Emirati youth nowadays are more attracted to modern values because people like the idea of it, it paints a nice picture, where words like acceptance and unity are used. Instead we should keep the traditions and values that mean the most to us and are most practical and let go of some others.”. Overall, Deema believes that while there has been a western influence on Emirati youth, the young men and women in the UAE have managed to maintain a balance between their cultural identity and the values of a world that is experiencing globalisation. Meanwhile 43 per cent said they are keen to embrace modern values and beliefs as traditional values are outdated and belong in the past. Our culture is to be found in our oral traditions, values, language, poetry and the history that has been handed down from generation to generation. Despite his strong belief in his traditional values, Al Hajari said modern values should also be adopted. Before that, the main cereal was wheat. 'The most precious of things': Sheikh Zayed and the road to the union, Tyson 'happy with a draw' after making boxing return against Jones Jr, How the UAE will help distribute Covid-19 vaccines worldwide, Generation Start-up: Foodics helps restaurant owners who have a lot on their plate, Abu Dhabi named in the top 10 best cities for expats. Visiting an Emirati home. Privacy Policy. Like all echo chambers, the impression that it’s a lovely ­country, but sadly there isn’t much culture is repeated at cocktail parties, where expats try to convince themselves that their presence in the Gulf is a huge personal ­sacrifice, and that for all the wonderful advantages of living here, they carry their cross stoically. Women and men couldn’t really deal with each other but I believe that things are changing they are working with each other and they interact with one another in the mall. “Today it is more acceptable for an Emirati to go to a non-segregated university, study abroad, go out to the mall and even work in the private sector for long hours than before. “In the Emirati culture, there are certain rules such as women shouldn’t be out too late on their own, and values like people have to visit their parents and extended family members often, but all of these values help us stay on the right track.” Al Muhessin explained that such values create a sense of respect between family members and keep people closer to religion. “When you’re in the US, you don’t feel like there is a specific culture. In the past, Emirati traditions varied between two main groups: desert-dwelling nomads called Bedouins and seafaring pearl divers and fishermen. The dress code plays an important role in defining not only an Emirati woman but also a Muslim woman, explained Deema. Seafood is mostly fish while mutton and lamb are the more common meats. “I think the Arabic language is well preserved among Emiratis, but more and more people are losing the dress code which is the abaya and sheela (scarf) for women.”. Emirati Arabs borrowed it from the Indian and Persian traders a few centuries ago. “Modern values should be adapted given that we don’t forget our traditions and cultures. Register to read and get full access to gulfnews.com, By clicking below to sign up, you're agreeing to our “Before, interacting or mixing with men wasn’t allowed in our culture, but now it is if you’re dressed modestly — in your abaya and scarf.”. To find out more about the cookies and data we use, please check out our, Dear Reader, please register to read gulfnews.com, Password should have minimum 7 characters with at least one letter and number, By Jumana Khamis 
and Noor NazzalStaff Reporters, Look: Breakfast with Penguins at Ski Dubai, Photos: World’s largest covered butterfly garden, Dubai Miracle Garden welcomes back visitors, Cool camping spots for the National Day weekend, Glenn Close questions Gwyneth Paltrow’s 1999 Oscar win, Motorist speeding without number plates caught in Taif, Camila Cabello on ‘messy’ relationship with Shawn, UAE National Day 2020: 49 amazing facts about the UAE, Oman: 4.8 magnitude earthquake in Southern Iran. “For example, at home we have to speak Arabic when we are spoken to in Arabic and we can reply in English if are addressed in English, but we can’t mix both languages.”. Asma Ahmad, an 18-year-old Emirati, said women are usually the subject of restrictions imposed by cultural and traditional values. All rights reserved. Al Hajari believes that Emirati traditional values will not disappear. “Working closely with people from completely different cultures is part of a modern way of thinking that is emerging. He said that language is one of the more obvious changes taking place among Emirati youth, and said that the older generation will always prefer to hear youth speaking in the Arabic language. The 2014 survey showed that 57 per cent of Emirati youth agreed that traditional values are meaningful and ought to be preserved for future generations. “The style and type of music one chooses to listen to is a personal choice and does not necessarily affect a person’s values or what they believe in.”. “My parents always insist that I maintain good relationships with Emirati families in my community by attending social gatherings with my father. The country's historical population as a small tribal community that has changed with the arrival of other nationals, in the mid-20th century. Now the whole world comes to Dubai, the locals are mixing with people from different nationalities and backgrounds; we have to find a way to make it work.”, Al Qazmi believes that to live successfully in today’s world traditional and modern values should be incorporated. If it does not then it can have a positive outcome on your way of living.”, 'Different cultures must exist in harmony'. “This is because the world has become interconnected. Just like most of the other countries in the world, western culture has played a part in shaping the cuisine of the UAE. The nature of the Bedouin is to travel with as few possessions as they could possibly carry. “I believe that all the values I have mentioned are relevant as I implement them as much as I could because I believe in them and because these values are related to the teachings of Islam. They might bemoan a lack of music houses, without spending an evening watching Arabs listening to poetry with tears in their eyes whenever they hear a poet elevating language to an art form. Traditionally, the people of the UAE (who are known as the Emiratis) have had their staple foods as rice, meat, and, seafood. This section is about Living in UAE and essential information you cannot live without. Umm al-Nar (also known as Umm an-Nar) was a Bronze Age culture variously defined by archaeologists as existing around 2600 to 2000 BCE in the area of the modern-day UAE and Oman. It is not about over socializing it is about being normal,” he said. “Our household combines both cultures, while we leaned a little more to the Emirati side. Values that encourage care for one another, ” she explained items art. You don ’ t have museums, opera houses, government buildings or items of art like many others Omar. 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