University of Iowa

Authored by Alex Bare

The Nizwa Market: almost every photo I took here contains about as much drama as a renaissance painting. It was also a heavily male-dominated space (peep the only woman in the top left wearing an Omani burqa).
7/30/2018

Rubbing elbows with sheikhs

The last couple weeks have consisted of listening to lots of Yemeni and Saudi music (Oman doesn’t have much of a popular music scene) and studying in Ibri. I truly do some deep studying here—what else can you do truly when it’s 115°F out every day and you have no car and no public transit?
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7/11/2018

When in the middle of the desert… my top picks for Ibri, Oman

When I say I’m “out here in the desert,” I’m not kidding. Someone told me the last time it rained was 10 months ago, but it HAS sprinkled a couple times. All the mosques are constantly praying for rain. Ibri is located just outside the largest sand desert in the world, the Empty Quarter, and as one of my instructors put it, “Ibri is famous for the color brown.”
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Even though it was 9 a.m., it was already 101°F at the mosque.
6/6/2018

Inside the Sultanate

After three days of orientation, 18 hours on planes, and two hours driving, I am finally in Ibri, Sultanate of Oman! This summer, I will be studying intensive Arabic (both Modern Standard and Omani Dialect) at the Noor Majan Institute after being awarded a Critical Language Scholarship through the U.S. State Department.
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9/21/2016

Life, Death, and Privilege in Potosi

I know I promised to deliver a blog about my classes this week, but consider that cancelled for the moment. Instead, I feel it is necessary to discuss my past week in Potosí. I’m fortunate to be studying here on a program that takes us to 6 major cities of Bolivia and even into parts of the countryside. I was not, however, mentally prepared for Potosí.
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Alex Bare
8/29/2016

A tale of two countries

Bolivia is not even close to being a popular study abroad location for American students. You will seldom see it advertised at study abroad fairs (although the number of programs for American students recently increased from one to two). Rarer yet will you hear from actual alumni of such a program.
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