Wednesday, August 29, 2007


أفراد من النوَر في لبنان (أرشيف)

The first article I have ever encountered in a Lebanese newspaper on the Roma people of Lebanon, locally called "Nawar", which is used as a derogatory term in Lebanon to mean "what is poor, unclean and not distingu
é". In Lebanon we seem to have selective blindness to the Roma people. Many of them live in the villages of the west Bekaa bordering the Damascus road. There are also groups of women and children who read palms in Beirut and on the South highway. This article says that they do not possess legal Lebanese papers and that they are occasionally arrested and pushed around by the police.

I'd really like to know more about them. I don't think there has been any systematic research on the Roma of Lebanon. If you know something please point me in the right direction.


Ms Levantine said...

I read a book a few years ago called Bury Me Standing about Romas, though not specifically Lebanon.

The word Gypsy comes from Egypt as Euro. thought they came from there. India is closer to the truth.

The ones in our areas come from a specific sub-group, don't recall which one.

It would be interesting to ask them how they define themselves.


nov_val said...


You can read a lot of articles about Domari Gypsy community on

However, they are not the Roma, since Roma are the European branch of Gypsy people, while Domari represent the middle-eastern extraction of our nation.

Mr. Valery Novoselsky,
Editor, Roma Virtual Network.
Consultant, European Roma Information Office

Rami Zurayk said...

thanks MM and Valery. Valery I'll check the site now

Anonymous said...

take a look at this site. it is about gypsies in turkey. but it is turkish.

Anonymous said...

There has been some research work carried out among the Dom in Lebanon.
The Dom research Cntre that Valery mentioned has some works, There is also a recent PhD thesis that should be finished by now (it was at the LSE).
I finished up some research among the Dom in Jordan, and with luck will have the thesis finsihed up by the new year.

There is very little governmental acknowledgement or few targetted development programmes, even when they are citizens. Interestingly, The UN Common Country Assessment Report (2006) stated that 'It could be contended that the most marginalized group in Jordan are the itenerant Roma and Gypsies.."

hope this provides some interesting material.

Anonymous said...

hope you watched LATCHO DROM...un film de tony gatlif..if know u should.