Encyclopedia of Women & Islamic Cultures

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Gossip: Arab States
(1,449 words)

The expression kalām al-nās (talk of the people) is a common term for gossip throughout much of the Arab Middle East and how information in the form of gossip circulates in communities can be quite important.

Gossip, positive or negative, can be used to reinforce group norms or to negotiate and further differing interests. Comments can be embellished to highlight basic points or outright falsified, perhaps backfiring upon the speaker. Men may depend upon wives…

Cite this page
Gardner, Ann, “Gossip: Arab States”, in: Encyclopedia of Women & Islamic Cultures, General Editor Suad Joseph. Consulted online on 27 March 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1872-5309_ewic_EWICCOM_0084a>
First published online: 2009

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