Disappearing Nubia

14-11-2016 07:50 PM

Mary Fikry-Antoun Milad









“Disappearing Nubia,” is the name of a photography exhibition at the Balassi Institute in Cairo. The photos, by Hungarian photographer Lantai Csont Gergely, were presented by Gábor Lassányi, Archaeologist at the Budapest History Museum and Aquincum Museum in Budapest, and Field director of the Hungarian-Sudanese Archaeological Project at the Merowe Dam area. The exhibition runs till 17 November 2016.

According to Mr Lassányi, the Hungarian expedition in East-Africa started in September 2013 with 21 amazing days in Sudan. Nubia lies at the north of Sudan and south of Egypt. The aim of the expedition, which ended in eastern Congo, was to seek out closed communities and make good quality photo documentation about them. It aimed to gain insight into the life of those ethnic groups which still preserved a good amount of their traditional material culture and customs. 


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Sudan was a wonderful beginning, Mr Lassányi says. The expedition could only cover a fraction of the territory of this enormous country. The main areas visited by the expedition were the Nile Valley, Nubia, the Eastern Desert and the area around Port Sudan.

The young Hungarian photographer was warmly welcomed by Nubians, Magyarabs, Bejas and Arabs. This exhibition is a testimony of the extraordinary multiculturalism of Sudan and the unmatched hospitality of the Sudanese people.

Taught in a small school in the Red Sea Hills, the learning of the Arabic language and writing is very dificult to Beja children, who often only speak the Beja language. The school teachers of the public schools in most cases came from other areas of Sudan, thus they do not speak the native language of the local community. Traditional teaching day in a Qur’anic school helps pupils learn Arabic from Beja speaking teachers with traditional methods, for many years.



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