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Volume 52, Number 4 July/August 2001

In This Issue

July/August 2001
The Arabs of Honduras
Written by Larry Luxner

One of the largest populations of immigrant Arabs in the Americas resides along the north coast of Honduras. From its hardscrabble beginnings more than a century ago, this community has in recent decades provided its adopted country with leaders in education, industry and politics—including Honduras's president, Carlos Flores Facusse.

Beyond the Monsoon
Written by Douglas Bullis
Photographed by Kevin Bubriski

Melaka, now the capital of the Malaysian state of the same name, rose as a Muslim kingdom early in the 15th century. Thanks to its location and its rulers' policies, it became a center for traders from as far away as China, Arabia and Europe, and became as well a regional melting-pot of cultures. Its glory is recalled in Malay epic literature, architecture and Muslim influences on the crucial Malaysian social codes known as adapt.

A Gift of Ghazals
Written by Louis Werner
Photographed by Kevin Bubriski

Deeply rooted in Kashmir and the Urdu language, teaching and writing in English in the United States, Agha Shahid Ali lives an exile's twofold life. He has been recognized as a unique and passionate voice in modern poetry, and is also championing the grafting into English of the ghazal, a poetic form so beloved in Urdu that it inspired competitive, all-night poetry symposia in the Mughal courts of the 18th and 19th centuries.

Living With the Animals
Written and photographed by Joseph J. Hobbs

Kept as pets, hunted for sport and food, offered in sacrifice, mummified by the millions, and believed to house the spirits of the gods—or, later, to be gods—animals played a central role in the life, beliefs and art of Egypt. Jackals escorted the dead through the underworld; hippos protected women in childbirth; a scarab beetle rolled the sun across the sky; deities were portrayed with animal heads; and detailed scenes of the Nile's abundant fish, fowl and wildlife were carved on tomb and temple walls and painted on papyrus. Perhaps no other culture has so intertwined itself with the animal kingdom.

The Musical Pulse of Tunisia
Written by Thorne Anderson

Even its aficionados say that mauf music takes patience to appreciate—let alone play, write down, or compose. But it's deeply embedded in Tunisian culture and under the skin of every Tunisian, harking back to rhythms more than half a millennium old that have been preserved and continually reinvented as a living emblem of national identity.