Faculty Book: Mandana Limbert
In the Time of Oil: Piety, Memory, & Social Life in an Omani Town
(Stanford University Press, 2010)
Before the discovery of oil in the late 1960s, Oman was one of the poorest countries in the world, with only six kilometers of paved roads and one hospital. By the late 1970s, all that had changed, as Oman used its new oil wealth to build a modern infrastructure. In the Time of Oil describes how people in the oasis town of Bahla experienced this dramatic transformation and how they now grapple with the prospect of oil’s future depletion. Focusing on shifting structures of governance and new forms of sociality as well as on the changes brought by mass schooling, piped water, and the fracturing of close ties with East Africa, Limbert shows how personal memories and local histories produce divergent notions about proper social conduct, piety, and gendered religiosity. With close attention to the subtleties of everyday life and the details of archival documents, local histories, and poetry, she provides a rich historical ethnography. Mandana Limbert (Assoc. Prof., Queens) is on the doctoral faculty in anthropology.
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Submitted on: JUN 7, 2010