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Tuareg jewellery and feminism

Last month I was in Morocco on the look out for some of the beautiful Tuareg jewellery. Such jewellery originally comes from the Sahara desert, however can now be found in the Souks of the old cities of Morocco. So far I’ve found them in Marrakesh and Essaouira. Whilst talking with certain traders I have become quite curious to find out a bit more about them and the tribes they come from.

Tuaregs, the blue tribe are nomads in the Sahara dessert. Spreading around Mali, Algeria, Libya, Niger. The Tuaregs are of muslim origins and in this particular case it is the men who wear vails, not the women. This struck me as fascinating as it was unlike the majority of contemporary muslin culture where these roles are reversed.

Women seemed to have a greater social status than the men, also having more sexual freedom. The women are able to enjoy multiple sexual partners before marriage.

Tuareg women can also obtain a divorce very easily if she is not happy within a marriage. If she decides to do so she keeps the kids, house and animals and her now ex-husband must take his camel and goes back to his mother.

Watch this video which explains more:

There is around 40 families that make this jewellery. It is only worn by the women as its considered bad luck for men to wear it. Made out of silver, onyx and mixed metals.

It is believed that the Tuareg jewellery has powers within it which it obtains from the fire within which it is forged.

Watch this video about the making of Tuareg Jewellery:

Isn’t it fascinating how jewellery has a distinguishing meaning in this tribe and it’s culture? I’m a woman that considers herself to be a feminist and I believe that men and women should be equal.

What’s interesting here though is the different cultural possibilities put in to practice. Now living in a society where men have more power and social status than women, this made me think about how there are also different societies that live within an opposite reality, it’s possible. Isn’t it then possible to live in a world where both men and women can be equal, and embrace both their masculine and feminine side?

You can see my collection of Tuareg jewellery here:

Elena StavrinouTuareg jewellery and feminism

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