Politics in an Arabian Oasis. The Rashidi Tribal Dynasty.

Al-Rasheed, Madawi.

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Book ID: 9225

ISBN:      1850433208


8vo. ix, 300 pp., 4 maps, 7 tables, 4 diagrams, cloth in lightly faded d/w, glossary, notes, biblio, index, previous owner’s name inscribed verso lower cover, some underlining, I.B. Tauris, London, 1991.


This is both a study of the relationships between tribes and state formation and an important political history of Central Arabia in the period before the present Saudi state. It deals with the Rashidi dynasty which in the nineteenth century emerged among the Shammar camel herders, made the oasis of Hail a capital rivalling Mecca and Medina in fame and prosperity, and attempted to unify central Arabia into a single polity. Drawing on archival material, travellers’ literature and rich interviews which would have been denied an outsider, the author reconstructs the social history of a dynasty which attracted the attention of both Western government officials and European travellers such as Wallin, Palgrave, Doughty and Blunt.

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