Investigating Bahrain Region

Subject: Science
Type: Analytical Essay
Pages: 4
Word count: 1039
Topics: Anthropology, Cultural Diversity, Geography, Geology
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Geographical Elements

I live in Bahrain, an archipelago of 33 prominent islands.

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Location

Bahrain is found in the Middle East which is a geographical region of south western Asia. It is located at the shores of Arabian Peninsula, positioned in both northern and eastern hemispheres. It is surrounded by the Gulf of Bahrain, an inlet of the Persian Gulf. More specifically, Bahrain region is found 26° 13′ N, 50° 34′ E (Belgrave, 1952 63).

Topography

Bahrain region is covered by low lying plains with features such as the rocky cliffs, hills and ravines (Dayaratne, 2012 317). The region doesn’t have mountains.  The northern part of the region has a narrow, arable strip of land. This area is irrigated by artesian wells and natural springs. From the shoreline the land raises gradually to a central point where it drops. This forms a basin that is surrounded by steep cliffs. At the center of the basin is the Jabal ad-Dukhan hill that rises to 134m above the sea level.  The region surrounding this hill is covered by salt marshes. The region has dry river valleys such as the Umm Al Guwaifa, Um Al Sami and Wadi al-Batin. Much more, the area has four aquifers, Rus Umm Er Radhuma, Alwasea, Dammam Khober and Alat. Most of the small islands are sandy and flat. One of the areas, Nabih Salih is covered by date groves.

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Climate of Bahrain

Bahrain region is characterized by two seasons, a relatively mild winter and an extremely hot summer (Elagib and Abdu, 1997 413). Summer is experienced in the moths of April to October where the average temperature in the afternoon is 41° C. in the months of June and July the temperature can reach 48° C. The high humidity and intense heat makes the season uncomfortable. During this season, aaws, a hot and dry southwest wind blows sand clouds across the southern end of Bahrain that is barren.

During the months of November to march, the winter months, the temperatures are moderate. They range from 10° C to 20° C. at this time the humidity is over 90%. This is as a result of the prevailing wind, shammal that blows damp air over the region. The region receives little precipitation. This happens during the winter months. The average annual rainfall for Bahrain is 72 millimeters. The winter rains are experienced in torrential bursts that occur within a short period. This leads to floods especially where shallow wadis exists.

Special Geographical Features

Bahrain has several unique geographical features. Firstly, it is an archipelago that is comprised of one large island and 32 other small islands. The other unique feature is the low-lying sandy and rocky plains that cover nearly 92% of Bahrain. The Coastal salt marshes found in the southern and central parts are special geographical features as well. Persian Gulf is a unique feature; it is the lowest point of Bahrain which is 0 m above the sea level.

The extensive coral reef that covers the northern part of the island is another important geographical feature. Jabal ad-Dukhan also referred as the mountain of smoke is one of the most conspicuous geographical feature. It is the highest point of the Bahrain (Edgell, 2006 12). The southern part of this hill is used as a camping site. Nabih Saleh has unique geographical features; aquifers with fresh water spring.

Cultural Elements

Original Inhabitants

Bahrain has essentially been occupied by Arabs. This accounts for nearly two-thirds of the population.  Apart from the native Arabs, the Bahrainis, other groups such as the Omanis, Palestinians and Saudis are also found in the region. The rest of the people living in the region are of Asian descent. These include the Indians, Persians, Filipinos and Pakistanis. Arabic is the language that is widely spoken in the region.

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Elements of Cultural Heritage

Bahrain ancient and storied culture has existed over the centuries. Despite the modernization, the Arabic culture has withstood the test of time. Traditional arts such as horse riding, horse and camel racing, and falconry are still in existence today. Also traditional pastimes such as poetry, basket making and cloth weaving are still practiced today.  In Manama, the capital city of Bahrain, the traditional arts share the stage with the modern arts. The antiques have been preserved in the national museum. These include the pottery, ivory figurines, copper goods, gold rings among many others. Much more, the locals even to date still wear the traditional dresses. These include a white robe normally referred as “thobe” for men. The women wear the black abayas. Both of the dresses are said to be cool and comfortable.

Effects of Cultural Heritage on the Economic and Social Systems

Cultural heritage has widely affected the social systems of people living in the region today. For example in regard to the dressing code the people of the region are seen to dress modestly. The dress must cover the knees and the shoulders according to the thumb rule (Al Bahar, Peterson, and Taylor, 1996 28). Only in isolated cases, such as hotel where casual dressing is allowed. Thus the traditional dressing has over the years affected the dress code of the people living in the region.

Traditional arts have a huge impact on the economy of Bahrain. For example handicrafts such as weaving and cloth making have become a way of life for the people living in the rural areas. The museums that house the art specimens have created jobs for many Bahrainis.  Thus art has contributed greatly toward the growth of Bahrain economy.

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Four Examples of Cultural Contributions

The people of Bahrain share some of their cultural aspects with the world. This is especially in art, food, literature and music. In regard to graphic arts, women from sanabis village in Bahrain are known for fabric weaving, this art has become common in India and many other parts of the world. Both Muhammar, a dessert made of brown rice and halwa a traditional green, sticky dessert are common in Arab restaurants across the globe.  In literature, the use of the classical Arabic styles in poetry has been shared with the outside world.  In music the traditional Arab mode that is repetitive has been widely adopted by other Arabic nations across the globe. The music is played on a rebaba and oud instruments. Also, the traditional folk dance, ardha, men sword dance has been adopted globally.

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  1. Al Bahar, A.A., Peterson, S.E. and Taylor, W.G.K., 1996. Managing training and development in Bahrain: the influence of culture. Journal of Managerial Psychology11(5), pp.26-32.
  2. Belgrave, J.H., 1952. A brief survey of the history of the Bahrain Islands. Journal of the Royal Central Asian Society39(1), pp.57-68.
  3. Dayaratne, R., 2012. Landscapes of nation: Constructing national identity in the deserts of Bahrain. National Identities14(3), pp.309-327.
  4. Edgell, H.S., 2006. Types of deserts and landform regions of Arabia. Arabian Deserts: Nature, Origin, and Evolution, pp.11-27.
  5. Elagib, N.A. and Abdu, A.S.A., 1997. Climate variability and aridity in Bahrain. Journal of Arid Environments36(3), pp.405-419.
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