When I began a survey of source material for this book in the early 1980s, I was somewhat surprised by the paucity of sources relating to socio-political dynamics in modem Saudi Arabia both in European languages and Arabic. Thus, William Rugh's article 'Emergence of a New Middle Class in Saudi Arabia' (1973), for instance, remains a classic to this day. In the field of social anthropology I found only a handful of serious studies of the Saudi population produced by western and Arab scholars (Katakura, Lancaster, Cole, Shamekh, and :tfamzah's outdated work). Other sources in Arabic largely dealt with the kingdom's geography and tribal division, past history to the twentieth century, the reign of Abd al-Aziz ibn Saud, and the rise of the Wahhabi movement and its impact on the Arabian Peninsula. The contribution of Saudi scholars of good standing to the subject was minimal, as the Saudi modem elites were beginning to emerge in the middle of the century and only lately have they begun to publish worthwhile scholarly studies of their society and government - studies inhibited, unfortunately, by the character of the regime and its strict censorship laws.
List of Tables -- Abbreviations -- Preface and Acknowledgments -- Introduction -- Part I: Ruling Class and Elites in Saudi Arabia -- Part II: Modernisation and Struggle for Political Reform -- Bibliography -- Index.