Libya: Ghadames

Highlander says that the Libyan city of Ghadames is renowned for its unique style of architecture, traditions and culture. Amongst these interesting traditions is the one found in a typical Ghadames home where a small peephole is made into the front door. A visitor would look through it inside the house at a reflection in a mirror hung on the wall opposite the door. This mirror reflects the picture of an oil lamp placed on a shelf.
There are 6 positions for the lamp, and these positions inform the visitor of what’s going on in this home and so help him to act/decide accordingly. Have a look at an artist's drawing and a brief explanatory text of what Highlander is talking about.


  • I’m so jealous… When I was in southern Tunisia in November I desperately wanted to be able to cross the border to visit Ghadames. Unfortunately, there’s no border crossing in that part of the country, even though Ghadames is just on the opposite side. That, and the fact that we Americans still can’t Libyan visas on short notice. Oh well….

  • […] On a slightly more serious note, Global Voices Middle East editor Haitham Sabbah speculates on future fatwahs against his friend and mine, Hossein Derakshan. Hoder is visiting Israel, hoping to report on the lives and opinions of Iranian jews living in Israel. He recognizes that this will almost certainly make it difficult for him to return to his native Iran, as Iran doesn’t recognize Israel’s right to exist. (Hoder is now a Canadian citizen, but it’s very important to him to be able to return home to Iran.) I’m happy to see that Haitham – who is going through a complex process of assessing his own feelings about Israel and Palestine – is considering a trip to Israel: “… although I really wish to make a visit to Israel, but I would prefer to go through the checkpoints of the Occupied Territories rather than going through cozy gates of Ben Gurion airport… Why? Because if peace has to take a chance, we have to remove the barriers, not jump over them!” […]

Join the conversation

Authors, please log in »


  • All comments are reviewed by a moderator. Do not submit your comment more than once or it may be identified as spam.
  • Please treat others with respect. Comments containing hate speech, obscenity, and personal attacks will not be approved.