12 May, 2009

Two great books on Hadhramout

For any one interested in reading, learning and knowing about Hadhramaut, two voluminous books are a must read: 'Indian Ocean migrants and state formation in Hadhramaut' (hardcover: 589 pages) by Ulrike Freitag and the other 'Hadhrami traders, scholars, and statesmen in the Indian Ocean' ( hardcover: 392 pages) also by Ulrike Freitag; and William Clarence-Smith.

Indian Ocean Migrants..... was published in 2003, about 6 years after Hadhrami Traders...... Both books were written by very gifted, skilled scholars: Dr. Ulrike Freitag is a lecturer and presently is the Director at the Center for Modern Oriental Studies, Berlin, in conjunction with an S-Islamic studies professor, FU-Berlin; and Professor William Clarence-Smith is a celebrated historian, lecturer and writer from Britain.

Some reviews about the books:


On Indian Ocean Migrants......

The author discusses the modern history of Hadhramaut in a novel way. Linked to the Indian Ocean through a long history of migration, she traces the ways in which members of the diaspora and travellers interacted with the homeland through their remittances, political initiatives and the introduction of new ideas and institutions. Google Books


Ulrike Freitag here discusses the modern history of Hadhramaut in a novel way. Linked to the Indian Ocean through a long history of migration, she traces the ways in which members of the diaspora and travellers interacted with the homeland through their remittances, political initiatives and the introduction of new ideas and institutions. The book is based on a wide range of Hadhrami and British sources, as well as on fieldwork in Yemen and Indonesia. Amazon


Dr Freitag is a gifted scholar and Arabist, clearly devoted to her subject. Drawing on a wealth of previously unused Hadhrami and British sources as well as on fieldwork in Yemen and Indonesia, she traces the various ways in which members of the Hadhrami diaspora interacted with the Hadhrami homeland through their remittances, political initiatives and the introduction of new ideas and institutions. Al Bab


On Hadhrami Traders......

This volume covers the long neglected history of Hadhramaut (southern Arabia) during the modern colonial era, together with the history of Hadhrami "colonies" in the Malay world, southern India, the Red Sea, and East Africa. Google Books


'"This is an excellent book.'
Abdullah Hassan Al-Saqqaf, "Asian Journal of Social Science, 2001.
'"Ein wichtiges Buch also, an dem keiner, der sich mit dem Jemen beschdftigt, vorbeikommen wird.'
Esther Peskes, "Die Welt des Islams, 1999
'"a valuable addition to the growing literature on the Indian Ocean region.'
Calvin H. Allen, "The Journal of Asian Studies. Amazon


It is the only comprehensive work of its kind to have been published to date and includes much painstaking research on different themes and disciplines. Al Bab


Unfortunately, both books are too expensive for the ordinary person. Still, considering the enormous research that must have been done in writing the books, and the extensive, in depth information in the two books - both are worth the time needed for reading them and the price.