Saudi Gazette publishes Saudi-focused essay by Andersen ’12, Tatro ’14

Anthropology major Devin Tatro ’14 talks with Saudi men at a desert farm in the Eastern Province during a Short Term trip last spring to Saudi Arabia led by Dana Professor of Anthropology Loring Danforth. Photo: Ana Bisaillon ’12.

The English-speaking Saudi Gazette newspaper publishes “Bridging the Cultural Gap,” an account of the Bates Short Term trip to Saudi Arabia written by Casey Andersen ’12 and Devin Tatro ’14 and featuring photos by Leena Nasser ’12.

Led by Dana Professor of Anthropology Loring Danforth and facilitated by Saudi citizen Nasser, the trip was ambitious in scope, the authors write.

“We dreamt of towering sand dunes, camels and palm trees, but we also wanted to learn about other, more important, aspects of the Saudi society: the medical, legal, economic and political systems.”

Getting answers meant near-constant conversation: with street vendors, artists, performers, NGO and business leaders, students, journalists, and women and men, young and old.

At a mosque, the students asked the Imam’s daughter about wearing her veil, or niqab. Didn’t it make women feel self-conscious?

“If I didn’t cover and wear my niqab that’s when I would feel self-conscious,” she explained.

4 Responses to “Saudi Gazette publishes Saudi-focused essay by Andersen ’12, Tatro ’14”

  1. Saud Ibn Abdul Aziz says:

    People, come on, listen to your selves! You people are judging on how equally women are treated based on what? on the fact that they wear an abaya? that they CHOSE to wear a niqaab?

    your ignorance makes me wonder, how do you sleep with yourself at night?


    A non-Saudi Happily living in Saudi Arabia for the past 20 years with a family (consisting of females as well, who wear an abaya and are very happy about it)

    p.s. – If that too doesn’t satisfy you, my sister passed this link to me saying, and I quote, “look at what non-sense they write about women covering in the middle east. Like if we walk around naked, it would be considered as freedom”.

  2. Ali Ameer says:

    Actually I’m from saudi Arabia and I dis agree with you about the last part of your comment that says ” Saudi women have a long, long way to go to achieve any kind of equality ”

    I know women’s in Saudi Arabia more successful than men there. Yes it’s hard most of the time but it’s not that “long, long way to go to achieve any kind of equality,”.

    About the cover up “Hijab” it’s for religion purpose and we proud of it as islamic country.

    As a men from Saudi Arabia, I found some difficulties too but women’s in Saudi Arabia getting batter.

  3. Traci says:

    I spent seven years of my childhood in Dhahran while my father was on assignment there, and I remember well the warm hospitality these students encountered. But I also remember having to cover up when we went off our compound. Saudi women have a long, long way to go to achieve any kind of equality.

    –Traci LaRosa Suppa, ’90

    • John says:

      you said u’ve lived in Saudi Arabia and I’m sure you know that Saudi girls are one of the top most spoiled girls around the world. More than men.
      so what kind of equality they have a long, long way to achieve?

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