Last Updated 17 Aug 2022

The Culture of the United Arab Emirates

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The culture of the United Arab Emirates has a diverse, cosmopolitan and multicultural society. The country's cultural imprint as a small, ethnically homogenous pearling community was changed with the arrival of other ethnic groups and nationals — first by the Iranians in the early 1900s, and later by Indians and Pakistanis in the 1960s. Dubai has been criticized for perpetuating a class-based society, where migrant workers are in the lower classes.  Despite the diversity of the population, only minor and infrequent episodes of ethnic tensions, primarily between expatriates, have been reported in the city. Major holidays in Dubai include Eid ul-Fitr, which marks the end of Ramadan, and National Day (2 December), which marks the formation of the United Arab Emirates.  Emirati culture mainly revolves around the religion of Islam, traditional Arab, and Bedouin culture.

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Being a highly cosmopolitan society, the UAE has a diverse and vibrant culture. The influence of Islamic and Arab culture on its architecture, music, attire, cuisine, and lifestyle are very prominent as well. Five times every day, Muslims are called to prayer from the minarets of mosques, which are scattered around the country.  The weekend begins on Friday due to Friday being the holiest day for Muslims. Most Muslim countries have a Friday-Saturday or Thursday-Friday weekend.  This unique socioeconomic development in the Persian Gulf has meant that the UAE is generally more liberal than its neighbors. While Islam is the main religion, Emiratis have been known for their religious tolerance, and churches, Hindu temples, Sikh Gurdwara can be found alongside mosques. However, there are no Jewish synagogue in the United Arab Emirates. A cosmopolitan atmosphere is gradually growing. As a result there are a variety of foreign-influenced schools, cultural centers, and themed restaurants.

The Culture of the United Arab Emirates essay

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