1. Leibniz-Zentrum Moderner Orient
  2. Publikationen
  3. Publikationsregister
  4. Der Friedhof für Nichtmuslime in Dschidda, Saudi-Arabien

Freitag, Ulrike

Der Friedhof für Nichtmuslime in Dschidda, Saudi-Arabien

Deutsches Institut für Urbanistik, Berlin, 2022

Moderne Stadtgeschichte, 1/2022
Special volume: Urbanität und Religion, hg. von Susanne Rau, Jörg Rüpke

S. 39-55

ISSN/ISBN 2567-1405

The non-Muslim cemetery of Jeddah, also known as the Christian or European cemetery, forms a kind of enclave in a region which for a long time explicitly excluded non-Muslims due to the geographical proximity to the holy city of Mecca. For this reason, the residence of Christians in Jeddah, which only became permissible in the 19th century, was a highly sensitive issue. Moreover, it became closely associated with the establishment of Western consulates, which were opened to further trade, protect Western shipping and keep Muslim pilgrims from colonized territories under observation. Whenever the consulates started to take an interest in the cemetery, politics and religion became closely entangled and potentially problematic. The article traces the history and symbolic importance of the cemetery. Originating as a burial ground for itinerant sailors and merchants, it developed into a formally delineated cemetery in the course of the 19th century. Due to the burial of consular officers, Western consulates and trading establishments began to organize its care. Since the second half of the 20th century, the cemetery has catered mostly to the needs of immigrant labour from Asia and Africa.