Ghagar of Sett Guiranha: A Study of a Gypsy Community in Egypt


Ghagar of Sett Guiranha: A Study of a Gypsy Community in Egypt



Cairo Papers in Social Science


Cairo Papers in Social Science


This monograph is the result of a field study of one of the gypsy groups in Egypt known as the "Ghagar of Sett Guiran'ha'i" which lives within the boundaries of the Arab Republic of Egypt, in a rural area, close to main centers. Apart from giving a detailed description of this group, the study attempts to reveal the dynamics of integration of this group with the society around it through the examination of forms of social contact and avoidance; the expioration of similarities and contrasts between the gypsy group and the local community; and the investigation of some aspects of the social structure and prevailing culture cif both the"Ghagar and their host community" Following Anne Sutherland's approach in her study of American Gypsies {1975}, every effort has been made in the present work to preserve the anonymity of this group and to protect them from curiosity seekers whose presence might jeopardize social relations with the host community. Accordingly, the precise locale of the Ghagar of Sett Guiran'ha is not given here and the names of specific individuals are withheld. This particular group was selected for study because it forms a typi­cal gypsy society: The Ghagar use their own language, in addition to the local Arabic; they have preserved and practice traditional gypsy occupa­tions; they practice endogamous marriage, though they share basic charac­teristics with the surrounding society; their numbers are reasonably small.

Publication Date

Spring 1982


American University in Cairo Press




marriage, kinship, ghagar, sett guiranha, gypsy, Egypt


Cairo Papers in Social Science 5(1)

Ghagar of Sett Guiranha: A Study of a Gypsy Community in Egypt