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Originally published in 1977 as part of the Urbanization in Developing Countries series, this book studies the social, demographic, political and economic processes involved in the growth of cities in the Middle East. It was the first study of urbanization in this region from a single viewpoint and it draws on the findings of numerous scholars. The main emphasis is on the insights provided by urban geography, sociology and social anthropology, but the work of demographers, economists and historians is also taken into account. Its main purpose is to examine the causes and consequences of the change in the character of the Middle Eastern city from a traditional to a twentieth-century pattern. The book describes the social and environmental background to urban development and the nature of the pre-industrial urban society in the region. The differences between planned urban development in various countries are also studied.