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His marriage celebration honors Sufian with a zefe, hoisted onto the shoulders of this friends. Enjoying a bumpy ride, he is moved from one pair of shoulders to another while they entertain guests with verse after verse of bawdy songs about him.
Katrina Thomas's notes: I photographed Arab Muslim celebrations billed as engagements, henna evenings and weddings in Brooklyn, NY and also in Dearborn, MI, which maintains the largest concentration of Arabs in the U.S. Couples may be matched; some meet at family weddings. Muslims make a distinction between marriage and a wedding. The marriage solemnizes a written or an oral agreement, al-mahr, money awarded to the bride by the bridegroom, and usually takes place privately in the home. It is not photographable because the bride and groom remain in separate rooms. Presumably, the marriage is not consummated until after the wedding, which announces the union of man and wife to the community. It takes place any time from a few hours after the marriage to a few years. A henna evening may be celebrated before either or both. The bridegroom's family pays for all festivities. What is distinctive besides the lack of alcohol, except clandestinely, and the sexes being divided so that women dance on one side of the hall and men dance -- dipping, hopping, stamping their feet -- on the other side, is that the bride and groom do not participate. They sit like royalty on a dais presiding over their jubilant guests.