Tribal solidarity as reflected in the election of the Kuwaiti parliament

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Al-Zubi, Ali
Coffin, James L.
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Thesis (M.A.)
Department of Anthropology
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Tribal solidarity is an important feature in the national election for Kuwaiti parliament as tribes practice it as a concrete reality through their competition with each other or with other Kuwaiti groups. By utilizing participant observation and applying the theory of interpretive anthropology, this study interprets how and why tribal members demonstrate such solidarity. In this sense, the thesis concentrates on interpreting the meanings of social actions and thoughts of these tribal members toward their collectivities and, then, on what kinds of benefits these tribal collectivities may provide. The study also indicates the interrelationships between tribal solidarity and other sociocultural systems (political, economic, psychological, social systems, etc.), which together show how tribal people modify and justify their actions and thoughts to benefit from their solidarity in the national election for parliament and other social contexts. In conclusion, Tribal solidarity is a part of large symbolic system, the Bedouin culture, which exemplifies a historical and social attachment between one and his tribe. It also reflects such political and economic benefits for members of a tribe in their daily cooperation with one another.