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Masters of the Pearl

A History of Qatar

Michael Quentin Morton



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Reaktion Books
01 October 2020
Sheds new light on Qatar, a country that has previously defied explanation Qatar is a country of spectacular contrasts: from pearl fishing, its main industry until the 1930s; to gas and oil, which generate immense wealth today; to the triumph and controversy of hosting the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

Almost a lifetime since he grew up in Qatar, Michael Quentin Morton writes about the country's colourful past and its controversial present. The book is filled with stories about the people of this land: the tribes and the travellers, the seafarers and slaves - as much a part of Qatar's history as its rulers and their wealth. The opaque Arabian world guards its secrets well, but Masters of the Pearl penetrates the veil to shed light on a country that has previously defied explanation.
By:   Michael Quentin Morton
Imprint:   Reaktion Books
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 234mm,  Width: 156mm, 
ISBN:   9781789143119
ISBN 10:   178914311X
Pages:   256
Publication Date:   01 October 2020
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Michael Quentin Morton grew up in Qatar, Bahrain and Abu Dhabi in the 1950s and '60s. He has written a number of books on the history of the Middle East, including Buraimi: The Struggle for Power, Influence and Oil in Arabia (2013) and Keepers of the Golden Shore: A History of the United Arab Emirates (Reaktion, 2016).

Reviews for Masters of the Pearl: A History of Qatar

Morton draws the reader in by weaving a well-written tale of tribal intrigue, regional and historic animosities, and big power rivalry. It is a history that on the one hand illustrates the forces that have shaped Qatar and other Gulf states and on the other describes how much the region has and is changing as the result of economic and social development and wealth garnered from oil and gas. Masters of the Pearl constitutes a critical, yet compassionate contribution to an understanding of a small state that manages to punch above its weight and the stormy winds that attracts. -- New Books Network That rare pearl: an accessible book on a Gulf country that also manages to be well-researched. Recommended for students and visitors alike, Quentin Morton's prose reveals a passion for the Qatar of old where he lived the early years of his life. Qatar today is now a regular, international news headline. This book puts that news in context. --Allen Fromherz, author of Qatar: A Modern History

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