Apropos of nothing, I thought I’d point people over to some interesting historical material I put up ages ago on my old Princeton website (which will probably turn defunct any day now, so if you happen upon this blog entry a year from now and find that the links don’t work, let me know). It’s an extract from an early 1900s (I think) magazine that I bought in eBay. Unfortunately, I have no idea what magazine, so if you can figure it out, please let me know.
It’s a National Geographic-style photo essay by Donald McLeish with text by Hamilton Fyfe entitled “Arabia: Life Along the Fringes of the Desert Land.” Note the intense interest in ‘race’ (“many Yemen families along the coast show touches of Negro blood”), religious sect, empire (“The Turks have been beaten and the land is open to Europeans”), and hairstyles of the men (“Hairy heretic Arabs,” “He is one of the Beduin Fuzzy-Wuzzies…”). The photos are fantastic, but go see for yourself, because there’s much more than the example above.