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Last of the Dictionary Men: Stories from the South Shields Yemeni Sailors

Photographic Exhibition

The North East of England boasts a proud maritime and industrial heritage that has all but disappeared from today’s landscape along the River Tyne. Within this heritage lies a remarkable Middle Eastern connection – South Shields is the Land of the Arabs! Over the course of 100 years, thousands of seamen from Yemen settled in the small town of South Shields and made it their home. Successful integration of the Yemeni community, it is argued, is one of the key multiculturalism stories that the region has to offer to the nation. In 2005, the Iranian film director, Tina Gharavi, embarked on a journey to discover the legacy of Mohammed Ali’s visit to South Shields in 1977 (one day after the Queen’s Jubilee tour to the region). While filming she met with the Yemeni elders at the Al-Azhar mosque who shared glimpses of their amazing lives, previously unknown and untold. A series of thirteen hand-coloured portraits by the internationally renowned photographer, Youssef Nabil, captures the first generation of Yemeni sailors with the pride they embody as individuals and as a community.

Event details

2015_SSIS_049___A5_2pp___v2.pdfLast of the Dictionary Men (1171K)