Turkmen women of Iran’s northeast while preserving rich Turkmen culture and traditions, are actively participating in economic and social scenes of their community.
Nearly two million Turkmen can be found living along the northern edges of Iran, just south of the Turkmenistan border. For centuries the Turkmen lived as nomadic herdsmen. In more recent years, however, many have changed to a “semi-nomadic lifestyle,” living in permanent homes as well as in tents. Today most of them are farmers and cattle breeders.
Turkmen still live in extended families where various generations can be found under the same roof, especially in rural areas. Many tribal customs still survive among modern Turkmen. Unique to Turkmen culture is kalim, which is a groom’s “dowry” that can be quite expensive and often results in the widely practiced tradition of bridal kidnapping.
Photo: Mehr News, Aliyeh Sa’adatpour