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LandScape - Essay Example

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Landscape of Oman University Name Landscape of Oman Introduction Oman is a vast and diverse country in the heart of the Middle East and is at the coast of the Arabian Sea. The country itself is sparsely populated, yet the people enjoy a quality of life that ranks it near the top in the region…
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Download file to see previous pages There are many interesting aspects to the country as well, such as the steep history of Bedouin people throughout the region (Chatty, 1983). One interesting aspect of the Bedouin culture is that it is impolite to allow the bottom of your foot to point toward another person. It is facts like this that make the landscape of Oman interesting to discover and write about. What follows is a bit more about the specific components that make up the landscape of this history rich country. Origin of the Landscape As Oman is located on the southeastern portion of the Arabian Peninsula, it has formed quite a diverse landscape over the years. There are multiple landforms present in the country including mountains, deserts, coastal strips that have become quite fertile, and gravel plain. When many think of Oman, they might envision a vast and flat desert, yet the Jabal al-Akhdar Mountain, also known as Green Mountain, is over 10,000 feet in elevation at its peak. That can be contrasted with the beautiful Musandam Peninsula, which is at the Strait of Hormuz. The landscape of this are is actually separate from the rest of Oman and add to the rich diversity of the country even more (Eickleman, 1983). It is a location where residents and visitors alike can come to enjoy the weather and go snorkeling. That certainly makes it unique when compared to other countries in the region. Ethnic Makeup of the Omani People The Omani people are a surprisingly homogenous group. For the most part, they have descended from the following ethnic groups: Arab, Baluchi, Persian, South India, and East Africa. Because of the rich resources available in the country, and relatively small labor pool, more than 600,000 expatriates call Oman their full-time home, so they would need to be considered a vital part of the cultural landscape as well. These individuals largely come from India and Bangladesh, in addition to the Philippines, Egypt, Sudan, Jordan, and Palestine. Generally speaking, the Omani people are considered to be among the most friendly, open, and tolerant of the Middle Eastern countries. Their ethnic background has generated a conservative and traditional way of life, yet the people are also interested in make technological and economic progress (Janzen, 1986). As such, the country is not stuck in a traditional upbringing, but it is moving forward to form an even more diverse cultural landscape. It is important to note that Omani people do tend to identify themselves along ethnic roots, so there is a social class distinction evident within the country. This has created the situation where family is valued over all else, so great importance is placed upon one’s family tribe of origin and their lineage, rather than on the individual or peer group. This type of ethnic breakdown has served the country well, however, as they have been one of the few countries in the region to balance this sense of tradition with the foresight to embrace modernity and economic progress. Role of Religion in Forming the Landscape As one would expect, religion has play a key part in the development of Oman’s cultural landscape. No surprisingly, nearly 75% of the inhabitants identify themselves as Ibadi Muslims, with the rest of the population largely being either Sunni or Shi’i Muslims. There are few other religious beliefs openly practiced in the country, so Islam has certainly served to shape the countries identity over the past few thousand years. While not ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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