Literature and Violence in North Arabia by Michael E. Meeker
Among the Bedouins of North Arabia, accounts of intertribal conflicts were the focus of ceremonial oral performances. In this study, Michael Meeker examines the relationship between these oral performances of the Bedouins and their way of life and poses questions about these performances which raise important issues in the fields of Orientalism and anthropology. This book, first published in 1979, challenges the tendency of historians to neglect the relationship between conditions in the literate urban centers and those in the hinterlands. As he discusses the intersection of art and life among the Bedouins, Meeker is able to show how the place of pastoral nomadism in Near-Eastern history has a bearing on many of the problems that have concerned Orientalists.