Original: “جلب العروس“
Transliteration: Jalab El Aroos
Translation: “Bring the bride”
The informant is one of my family members who is married and has been raised in Lebanon for most of her life. She discusses instances in her childhood and moments with her family that are the most significant to her culture and upbringing
She states that “Lebanese heritage lies mostly within special occasions such as weddings, which is one of the most important moments of every Lebanese individual’s life as it brings most of the family together to practice passionate traditions that can only be done on these rare occasions” conveying the importance of culture within Lebanese Culture. She states that “This certain grand gesture is mostly practised by the Druze religion and is the process of claiming the bride from her family home” The Druze religion is the smallest religious group in Lebanon that have a certain manner in performing wedding ceremonies specifically. The process involves “driving from the groom to the brides home with a traditional Lebanese ‘Zaffe’ which includes a band and dancers dressed in traditional Druze wear” which the informant states have been done at her wedding in a vast manner. She ends with “The groom and family must dance and sing until they reach the bride to claim her from her parents and take her back to his home” The informant has specifically stated that this process is accurate at all Druze weddings and is a part of the ritual of their marriage.
The formal use of the title of the gesture highlights how sacred this element of the wedding is to the culture and religion. Although the Druze community is not the largest religious group in Lebanon, it is still indicated to be the country with the highest Druze population, therefore, having such a theatrical part of the ceremony allows them to celebrate their culture in a day with the entirety of the community. The dance is the main element of the gesture highlighting the culture that is taught into daily life in the ceremony so that every individual has the chance to celebrate and bring their culture to light at this heightened moment of celebration together. Incorporating the traditional outfits of the religion allows the community to be seen by the rest of the country as they are the smallest religious group. Although the ceremony may not have religious scripture or performance elements incorporated such as Christianity or Islam, this is how the Druze community incorporates their culture into formal celebrations and rituals. It also portrays the unity between the families as it is not an aggressive ‘claim’ but instead an agreement to allow the couple to continue to thrive in a joint manner in the Druze community.