Volume :29 Issue : 2 2001
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Social Functions of Weekly Markets in Al-Baha
Auther : Abdul-Razzaq H. Al-Zahrani
Weekly markets in Al-Baha, which is located in the southwestern part of Saudi Arabia, was not only performing economic functions, but also, social functions. Those markets continued to perform these functions until around 1975 when the modern markets began to take over, and other social institutions like schools, mail, and mass media began to do the social functions of those weekly markets. This study is trying to explain the social functions of weekly markets in Al-Baha like uniting the tribes, using the market as a tool of punishment, entertainment, mail and religious education. The researcher used th anthropological research method which depends on living with the subject and using participatory observation, also, the researcher depends on old people as key informants. The theorectical frame of the study depends on the thought of National Economy School, Social Economy School and Struggle School. This study presentes information about markets in Arab history with special attention given to (Jaheliyya) pre-Islamic period, dawn of Islamic period and the markets in modern life.
Key words: Weekly markets, Market secure boundaries, Market inspector, Social and security control.