The Persian Gulf in History

Overview

This edited volume surveys the history of the Persian Gulf from ancient times until the present day. Chapters by leading authorities summarize the internal history of the region and highlight the role outsiders, including the Portuguese, Dutch, Ottomans, British, and Americans, have played there. A major theme is the unity and distinct identity of Gulf society and how the Gulf historically has been part of a cosmopolitan Indian Ocean world. Until now, an inability to conceptualize the Gulf's history as a whole ...

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Overview

This edited volume surveys the history of the Persian Gulf from ancient times until the present day. Chapters by leading authorities summarize the internal history of the region and highlight the role outsiders, including the Portuguese, Dutch, Ottomans, British, and Americans, have played there. A major theme is the unity and distinct identity of Gulf society and how the Gulf historically has been part of a cosmopolitan Indian Ocean world. Until now, an inability to conceptualize the Gulf's history as a whole has resulted in scholarly attention being focused on small parts of it. This book will instead focus on the society of the entire Gulf littoral and emphasize the connections between the Arab and Persian coasts.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
The Persian Gulf in History is a very timely volume. . . It will be indispensable reading for anyone interested in a region whose strategic, political, economic, and financial importance has grown spectacularly in the last four decades. The book is well put together and extremely readable. It should be required for any university-level course on Gulf history and deserves to be on the bookshelf of any serious Gulf scholar.”—Uzi Rabi, International Jourbanal of Middle East Studies

"Together, the fifteen contributors provide a multilayered picture of the many historical processes that shaped the modern-day Gulf. The constancy of external power interventions and the cosmopolitan nature of an integrated south Asian-Indian Ocean community stand out from the analysis."—Middle East Policy

"This book provides a fresh, strikingly original and informative reexamination of the history of the Persian Gulf. It encourages us to see the Gulf not as a collection of disparate states but as a unit, with a unique and common culture based on extensive trade, fluid movement of peoples, and a tolerance for diversity. It will be indispensable reading for anyone interested in a region whose strategic, political, economic and financial importance has grown spectacularly in the last four decades."—Shaul Bakhash, Clarence Robinson Professor of History, George Mason University

“The Gulf countries, the keys to the security and economic future of the Middle East, receive meager attention, at best, in university studies.  Few professors visit there, and those who visit but one or two countries inevitably come away with skewed impressions.  Never has a general work on the history of a region been more sorely needed.   And never has there been greater justification for presenting a history as a series of articles embodying various authorial viewpoints.  Historical thinking about the Gulf as a whole is still in an embryonic stage, but this collection provides some of the insights that will help its speedy maturation.”—Richard W. Bulliet, Professor of History, Columbia University

“The ‘Persian Gulf in History’ brings together a collection of essays of outstanding importance and quality, each written by a leading authority in the field. This volume represents a signal achievement in the study of the Gulf as a single unit of analysis, from its earliest history until recent times. It also illustrates in fine detail the multiple connections and entanglements between the Gulf and the outside world, whether it be the Indian Ocean or the European and American powers. The picture that emerges is complex, richly textured and marks a new standard in the scholarship on this exceptionally important, yet understudied, part of the world.”—Bernard Haykel, Professor of Near Eastern Studies, Princeton University

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780230612822
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Publication date: 5/11/2010
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 336
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Lawrence G. Potter has been Deputy Director of Gulf/2000 since 1994 and has taught at Columbia University since 1996, where he is Adjunct Associate Professor of International Affairs. A graduate of Tufts College, he received an M.A. in Middle Eastern Studies from the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, and a Ph.D. in History (1992) from Columbia University. He taught in Iran for four years before the revolution and from 1984 to 1992 was Senior Editor at the Foreign Policy Association. He specializes in Iranian history and U.S. policy toward the Middle East. He co-edited (with Gary Sick) The Persian Gulf at the Millennium: Essays in Politics, Economy, Security, and Religion (1997), Security in the Persian Gulf: Origins, Obstacles, and the Search for Consensus (New York: Palgrave, 2002) and Iran, Iraq, and the Legacies of War (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2004). He published "The Persian Gulf in Transition" in the Foreign Policy Association's Headline Series (January 1998).

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Table of Contents

List of Tables v

List of Maps and Figures vi

Acknowledgments vii

Note on Transliteration viii

Introduction Lawrence G. Potter 1

Part I Gulf History and Society

1 The Archaeology and Early History of the Persian Gulf D. T. Potts 27

2 The Persian Gulf in Late Antiquity: The Sasanian Era (200-700 C.E.) Touraj Daryaee 57

3 The Gulf in the Early Islamic Period: The Contribution of Archaeology to Regional History Donald Whitcomb 71

4 The Kings of Hormuz: From the Beginning until the Arrival of the Portuguese Mohammad Bagher Vosoughi 89

5 Boom and Bust: The Port of Basra in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries Rudi Matthee 105

6 The Arab Presence on the Iranian Coast of the Persian Gulf Shahnaz Razieh Nadjmabadi 129

7 Gulf Society: An Anthropological View of the Khalijis—Their Evolution and Way of Life William O. Beeman 147

Part II The Gulf and the Indian Ocean

8 The Cultural Unity of the Gulf and the Indian Ocean: A Longue Durée Historical Perspective M. Redha Bhacker 163

9 The Persian Gulf and the Swahili Coast: A History of Acculturation over the Longue Durée Abdul Sheriff 173

10 India and the Gulf: Encounters from the Mid-Sixteenth to the Mid-Twentieth Centuries Patricia Risso 189

Part III The Role of Outsiders

11 The Portuguese Presence in the Persian Gulf Jo&amarc;o Teles e Cunha 207

12 Dutch Relations with the Persian Gulf Willem Floor 235

13 The Ottoman Role in the Gulf Frederick Anscombe 261

14 Britain and the Gulf: At the Periphery of Empire J. E. Peterson 277

15 The United States and the Persian Gulf in the Twentieth Century Gary Sick 295

Contributors 311

Index 317

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