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Somalia

Heather Marie Akou

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Africa 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Somalia is located in the Horn of Africa. The northern coast is less than one hundred miles from the Arabian Peninsula and shares a great deal of history and dress with that region. In the cities, houses are built with thick walls to keep out the heat; in the deserts, nomadic people live in shelters constructed of branches covered with leather or plastic, and distinct differences in dress exist. Nomadic dress has typically been more practical and flexible, consisting of leather, cotton wrappers,

Sudan

Susan M. Kenyon

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Africa 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The Republic of the Sudan is the largest country in Africa, encompassing nearly a million square miles, with great diversity of both environment and population. Its landscapes range from desert in the north to rainforests in the south, and, while rainfall varies, temperatures are uniformly high, a significant factor in considering what people there wear. Sudan’s approximately thirty million people include more than fifty ethnic groups, with differing identities reflected in their appearance. Inva

Ethiopia

Peri M. Klemm

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Africa 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The array of dress styles in Ethiopia is vast. Often dress is meaningful on several levels and may indicate age, status, political membership, religious belief, and ethnic affiliation. Each culture within Ethiopia has its own unique style of dress. The abundance of dress styles in Ethiopia is largely due to the diversity of climate, geography, and culture. Ethiopian geography is divided into the highland and lowland regions. The Ethiopian population of seventy-five million is made up of some eigh

Eritrea

Peri M. Klemm

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Africa 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Nine ethnic groups live in the mountain and lowland regions of Eritrea and identify equally as OrthodoxChristian and Sunni Muslim. Eritrean inhabitants speak both Cushitic and Semitic languages. The Tigrinya and Tigre peoples of the Eritrean highlands make up 80 percent of the population. Women of the highlands traditionally wear the zuria, a long, white, handwoven, undyed cotton dress with long sleeves and thick bands of colorful embroidery at the chest, hem, and sleeves. When the zuria is elabo

Djibouti

Peri M. Klemm

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Africa 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The country of Djibouti, formerly French Somaliland and, in 1967, the French Territory of the Afars and Issas, achieved independence in 1977. It has around half a million inhabitants. Djibouti is made up of the Issa, a Somali clan, and the Afar, who also reside in Ethiopia. Both groups are Muslim and speak Cushitic tongues, but they have a history of civil conflict. The Djiboutian landscape of coastal plains and central plateau is mostly desert and very dry. Because this climate makes agricultura

More than Costume History: Dress in Somali Culture

Heather Marie Akou

Source: Dress Sense. Emotional and Sensory Experiences of the Body and Clothes 2007

Book chapter

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