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Society in Qatar before the Oil Industry in Light of Archaeological Evidence

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The archaeological excavations conducted within Qatar have revealed remains of a series of towns and villages dated to the pre-oil industrial era, particularly from the 18th to the beginning of the 20th centuries (Guérin & al-Na‘imi 2008; Hardy-Guilbert 1998). Particularly important sources for our study are the major archaeological site of al-Zubarah, which was inscribed in the UNESCO World Heritage sites in 2013, and the site of Ra’s ‘Ushayrig and its adjacent human settlements, such as al-Ruwaydah and al-Burayqa. The archaeological record of the uncovered architecture and material culture (e.g., vessels and tools) is a primary source for understanding and reconstructing Qatar micro history and communal identity of Qatar during this period. In light of archaeological evidence, this paper endeavors to discuss the characteristics of the Qatari communal identity before the oil industrial era, focusing particularly on the period from the 18th to the beginning of the 20th century.

Affiliations: 1: Qatar University,


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