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Our thematic selections : Souks

The Arabic work “souk” is a generic term. It can describe a village’s modest weekly market. But in the definition we use here, it has a more precise meaning, indicating a permanent commercial space, either covered or not, with both merchant stalls and artisan workshops.

In the Arab-Muslim world, where the economies were traditionally based on the caravan trade and commerce, souks were often surrounded by funduqs and caranvenserais, traditional inns offering accommodation and storage for itinerant traders.

Souks played an essential role in the life of a city. They have fascinated travelers and orientalists and still attract tourists in search of picturesque sites.

Craftsmen are reinterpreting traditions without overturning them, and souks, which are driven by informal trade, also offer low-cost goods made in China and Turkey alongside local products.

Souks carry on, in a very different way from the Western-style shopping centers and high-end malls that have recently cropped up in the large cities of the Middle East and the Maghreb.

This selection is just a taste of the AWI's rich heritage.

You can find out more about these subjects by exploring this portal or by visiting the Institute.

RDV de l'Histoire du monde arabe (2015) - Du souk au mall : le marché dans la péninsule Arabique
  • 2015
  • Videos
RDV de l'Histoire du monde arabe (2015) - Nourrir la ville
  • 2015
  • Videos
Marché devant la mosquée des Ketchaoua dans la basse Casbah.
  • RAMBAUD Thierry
  • ALGERIE , Alger
  • 2002
  • Photography
Marchand de cierges dans le souk couvert de Damas.
  • CATELOY Fabrice
  • SYRIE , Damas
  • 2001
  • Photography
Boutique de souvenirs, dans Khan al Khalili.
  • KHOURY Ayman
  • EGYPTE , Le Caire
  • 1998
  • Photography
A Beyrouth, galerie marchande rue Maarad.
  • CATELOY Fabrice
  • LIBAN , Beyrouth
  • 2003
  • Photography
Souk devant la médina près de la porte Bab Tunis à Kairouan.
  • CATELOY Fabrice
  • TUNISIE , Kairouan
  • 2011
  • Photography
Vente de tapis et de produits de vannerie au souk Al Zrabia, au sortir de la place Jemaa el Fna.
  • TREAL Cécile, RUIZ Jean-Michel
  • MAROC , Marrakech
  • 1999
  • Photography
Boutiques de brocanteurs sous les arcades dans le quartier des Habous ou nouvelle médina ( 1917, architectes Auguste Cadet et Edmond Brion ), Casablanca.
  • SIDOLI Alice
  • MAROC , Casablanca
  • 2014
  • Photography
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