To send content items to your account,
please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies.
If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account.
Find out more about sending content to .
To send content items to your Kindle, first ensure email@example.com
is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings
on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part
of your Kindle email address below.
Find out more about sending to your Kindle.
Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations.
‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi.
‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.
This chapter sketches Jeddah’s transformation from the mid-twentieth to the early twenty-first century. Old Jeddah transformed from a slowly expanding town centre to an urban slum. Only the registration as a World Heritage Site in 2014 reversed this trend. Today, trade and pilgrimage are still important for Jeddah’s economy. However, most of the trade passes through a large container port in Southern Jeddah, and pilgrims are ferried directly from a special terminal at Jeddah’s international airport to Mecca. They no longer pass through the city and have only recently been invited back as tourists. The renewed interest in the old city as a cultural heritage site has made it central to local and Saudi Arabian contests over identity. While ‘strangers’ no longer can integrate easily, the cosmopolitan heritage is celebrated. At the same time, inhabitants of former suburbs also lay claim to the urban history. The ongoing debate about the historical identity of old Jeddah thus reflects wider debates within Saudi Arabian society.
Chapter 3 examines the changing population of Jeddah by drawing on exemplary migration histories, reconstructed on the basis of (often oral) family histories. The chapter shows the variety of origins and different ways in which individuals managed to establish themselves in the city, both economically and politically. While precise historical dates are often unavailable, the chapter attempts to trace when specific groups, such as West Africans fleeing French expansion in sub-Saharan Africa, had particular incentives to migrate to the Hijaz. Special attention is given to the slave trade and the ways in which male and female slaves, and notably their descendants, were integrated into households.
This chapter introduces the topic, theoretical approach, and sources used to write the present history of Jeddah. The local perception of Jeddah as ‘different’ in a Saudi Arabian context serves as the point of departure for this undertaking. Building on the local view of a city hospitable to Muslim pilgrims, a number of practices are discerned which allow the characterisation of Jeddah as a cosmopolitan city with a distinct set of convivial practices. These will be explored throughout the book using a broad range of Arabic, Ottoman, and foreign sources, produced both by governments and individuals. These also include travelogues and local histories as well as material dealing with local traditions.
Chapter 4 discusses the evolution of the urban space of Jeddah in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century on the basis of maps, photographs, and documents. It shows the impact of the Ottoman modernisation efforts regarding the urban fabric. Thus, the economic lifelines of the city, such as the ports and markets, were regularly cleaned and expanded. New buildings also reflected the increase of the state functions of administration and health. The latter issue was given particular attention in the light of concerns over epidemics, most notably cholera. Another major and related concern was the provision of sufficient and clean drinking water. Urban growth is also seen in the evolution and growth of suburbs which were closely linked to the city.
This chapter investigates the governance of a diverse city over time, with a special emphasis on those institutions which interfaced between the imperial representatives and the local elites. In the Ottoman reform period, these consisted primarily of an array of different consultative councils at various levels (municipal and provincial). Notably under Saudi rule, these were slowly integrated into the emerging new Kingdom, accompanied by a gradual change in the urban elites controlling the city. The chapter also investigates the implementation of law and order. Finally, it tackles attempts to regulate immigration from Ottoman times to the early Saudi nationality law, and the different rationales behind attempts to limit or rather circumscribe the presence of foreigners. Policies were driven, in Ottoman times, by fears of imperial intervention and attempts at poverty limitation, while, in the Saudi period, an initially liberal approach to nationality soon gave way to more exclusive considerations.
Chapter six investigates the economic bases of Jeddah, trade and pilgrimage. A brief overview of major trends in trade and transport is followed by a more detailed discussion of the merchants of Jeddah and their internal organisation. The political role of the merchants and their relation to the respective ruling powers forms another topic. The chapter then turns to the pilgrimage, starting by investigating the pilgrims’ guides and the way in which they organised reception, accommodation and transport for pilgrims. Given the attempts of Western powers to limit what were perceived health and political threats emanating from the pilgrimage, the ways in which such organisation played out locally through the consulates is touched upon, notably in as far it affected local water and health provision. Finally, the chapter turns to the Bedouin, a population usually residing outside of the city walls but indispensable to trade and pilgrimage and constituting a vital link between the city, its suburbs and surroundings.
The chapter situates Jeddah, the port of Mecca, within the new Islamic polity and the networks of regional and interoceanic trade between the Indian Ocean and the Mediterranean. It traces the competition for control of the Red Sea ports from the expansion of the Ottoman Empire in the early sixteenth century to the establishment of the present system of states, focusing on the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. These were particularly marked by the introduction of steam shipping and the opening of the Suez Canal, leading to an increased interest of the British and French empires in the region. Ottoman governors further faced powerful merchants in Jeddah as well as the Sharifs of Mecca, who often contested their authority and hampered attempts at provincial and urban reform. After a brief interlude of Sharifian rule (1916–25), ʿAbd al-ʿAzīz Āl Saʿūd established his rule over the Hijaz.
This chapter examines the social fabric of Jeddah by focusing on the urban social institutions that provided the basis of interaction and integration. These are considered by starting at the level of family and household. Quarter and professional associations and their venues, notably coffeeshops, are another important field of urban interaction. They also included regular religious ceremonies and the gatherings of Sufi orders. In the early twentieth century, cultural associations evolved. In this context, the educational and journalistic fields are examined. Finally, sports, particularly football, became an important integrating factor. The chapter thus engages the inclusive, as well as exclusive, aspects of the multicultural urban society of Jeddah.
Known as the 'Gate to Mecca' or 'Bride of the Red Sea', Jeddah has been a gateway for pilgrims travelling to Mecca and Medina and a station for international trade routes between the Indian Ocean and the Mediterranean for centuries. Seen from the perspective of its diverse population, this first biography of Jeddah traces the city's urban history and cosmopolitanism from the late Ottoman period to its present-day claim to multiculturalism, within the conservative environment of the Arabian Peninsula. Contextualising Jeddah with developments in the wider Muslim world, Ulrike Freitag investigates how different groups of migrants interacted in a changing urban space and how their economic activities influenced the political framework of the city. Richly illustrated, this study reveals how the transformation of Jeddah's urban space, population and politics has been indicative of changes in the wider Arab and Red Sea region, re-evaluating its place in the Middle East at a time when both its cosmopolitan practices and old city are changing dramatically against a backdrop of modernisation and Saudi nation-building.