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Essaouira was founded n 1764 by Sultan Sidi Muhammad b. Abdullah as his port for developing trade with Europe. Through a group of Jewish middlemen, it served as a link between Europe, Morocco and su-Saharan Africa. In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries its fame rivalled Tripoli, Tunis and Algiers. Based on extensive untapped archive in Morocco, papers of Jewish merchant houses and consular records of Britain, France and the United States, this book gives an account of the city in its heyday. Essaouira was an opening to foreign penetration, but it was also important to the Moroccan government, because potentially dissident regions became tied to its commercial and political activities. The control of the sultans was undermined as foreign powers imposed liberal trade and intervened in Moroccan affairs. This study of a specific city and region throws light on the problems of traditional societies in the age of European economic imperialism.
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- Date Published: March 2009
- format: Paperback
- isbn: 9780521105408
- length: 348 pages
- dimensions: 229 x 152 x 20 mm
- weight: 0.51kg
- availability: Available
Table of Contents
2. The royal port
3. Merchants of the Sultan
4. Port and bazaar
5. Beyond the walls
6. The politics of trade
7. Foreign intervention and domestic reforms
8. The struggle for the Southwest
9. The people of Essaouira in pre-colonial times
10. The end of an era
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