Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Karen Elliott House, a former Wall Street Journal reporter and foreign editor, presents a detailed analysis of the changes inside Saudi Arabia. The nation is the world’s largest oil producer and an absolute monarchy known for strict adherence to Islam, strong traditions, and sharply defined roles for male and female citizens. House discusses the role of the Saudi king as head of the ruling family, head of state and the protector of Islam. Her book was published before King Abdullah, 90, died on January 22, 2015, and his half-brother King Salman became his successor, so the discussion of succession is now more complex. Saudi Arabia suffers internal dissent, corruption, prejudice and palace intrigues. It also has many poor people, millions of imported menial workers and a youthful population frustrated by unemployment and inequality. getAbstract recommends this highly readable analysis to investors, NGOs, policy makers and anyone interested in Middle East geopolitics. House offers a sharp snapshot of how this complicated nation tries to balance the competing interests of oil, religion, royal entitlements, subjugated women, disenfranchised poor and a mostly passive population.
About the Author
Former publisher of the The Wall Street Journal, Karen Elliott House won a Pulitzer Prize in international reporting for her work in the Middle East. She spent 30 years traveling to Saudi Arabia meeting hundreds of princes, paupers, women, men, modernizers and conservatives to write this book.