For centuries, the Arabian Gulf has been a crossroads where seafaring people and Bedouins alike travelled great distances transacting business. Events of the past few years, both good and bad, have directed the world’s attention to the Arabian Peninsula, where a rich cultural tradition is rapidly incorporating the latest innovations from around the world. This is the process of globalization.
New economies create enormous potential, but it will require great care for the people of the region to steer through a period of profound change. Political and economic interests intent on maintaining the flow of petroleum products on one hand, and people in the Gulf region who assess their won interests from quite a different perspective, on the other, exert pressures from conflicting directions. Reconciling these interests in a time of rapid globalization poses enormous challenges.
This timely volume brings together the work of scholars from both the Middle East and the West who have the expertise to evaluate the interaction of new ideas, new technologies and new economies. Brought together by the American University of Sharjah and the Sociological Association of the UAE, the contributors reflect on both the process of globalism and on the traditions of Gulf society and culture, offering views on how these trends interact within the global system.
Table of Contents
Part 1: Overview of How Globalization Has Articulated With Gulf Societies, c.1970-2006 1. The Arab Gulf: Global and Tribal Syncretism Part 2: Globalization: Concepts, History, Dynamics and Consequences 2. The Concept of Security in a Globalizing World 3. A Globalism at the Beginning of the 20th and 21st Centuries 4. Globalization as Economic Phenomenon: A Critical Interpretation 5. The Trends in Globalization Critiqued Part 3: Globalization, Politics and Identity in the Arab World 6. How Likely is Democracy in the Gulf? 7. An Argument for Enhancing Arab Identity within Globalization 8. The Gulf Engulfed: Confronting Globalization American-Style Part 4: Globalization in the Gulf 9. Saudi Arabia's Role in the Global Economy 10. The Impact of Globalization on Arab Gulf States 11. An Overview of International Relations from the Arabian Gulf 12. Foreign Matter: The Place of Strangers in Gulf Society 13. Ambivalent Anxieties of the South Asian-Gulf Arab Labor Exchange 14. The Evolution of the Gulf City Type, Oil and Globalization 15. Historical Globalism in Shajrah
John W. Fox is Professor of Anthropology at the American University of Sharjah. Nada Mourtada-Sabbah is Associate Professor of Political Science and Chair of the Department of International Studies at the American University Sharjah. Mohammed Al Mutawa is Associate Professor of Sociology at the United Arab Emirates University.