Jordan - Culture


Although religion and tradition play an important part in modern-day Jordanian society, Jordanians live in a relatively secular society that is increasingly grappling with the effects of westernization and globalization. Jordan is considered one of the Arab World's most cosmopolitan and westernized countries with its capital Amman becoming referred to as the "New Beirut". 67% of Jordanian youth identify themselves as liberals, second highest in the Arab World after Lebanon.

According to the Center for Strategic Studies, 52% of Jordanians support a secular state in which religious practices were considered to be “private matters that must be differentiated from social and political life". 6% express indifference towards a secular state or a more religious one. 42% prefer more religious involvement in social and political life. Furthermore, this is reflected in the religious habits of Jordanians. According to the 2010 Legatum Prosperity Index, less than half of Jordanians regularly attend religious services (around 40%), a moderate percentage in comparison to industrialized countries. However, this rate is among the lowest of all the Arab countries and it is one of the lowest in the entire Muslim World.

Although many people from different regions of the world have come to settle in Jordan, Europeans like the (Circassians and the Chechens) or other Middle Easterners like the Armenians, they have long been assimilated in the society and added their richness to the society that subsequently developed. However, the culture of Jordan, as in its spoken language, values, beliefs, ethnicity is Arab as the Kingdom is in the heart of Southwest Asia. Jordan has a very diverse cultural scene with many different artists, religious sects, and ethnic groups residing in the small country because of Jordan's reputation for stability and tolerance.

Jordan imports the overwhelming majority of its music, cinema, and other forms of entertainment from other countries most specifically other Arab countries like Lebanon and Egypt as well as by the West primarily the United States. However, there has been a rise of home-grown songs, music, art, movies and television, but they pale in comparison to the amount imported from abroad.

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