Fifty Years After The Oil Crisis: Consequences, Analyses, Perspectives

Exhibition Dates
Artist / Curator

French Research Centre

Fifty years ago, the oil ministers of the OPEC Gulf States met in Kuwait to make a series of decisions which led to outcomes that are still shaping our world today. On 16 October 1973, they decided to increase the oil prices, thereby taking back the power of setting these prices from the American and European Oil Companies that were still exploiting the region’s oil fields. On 17 October 1973, in response to the October War, the Ministers of the Arab Countries implemented an embargo on oil intended for countries allied to Israel.

Beyond its economic and geopolitical origins, this event was to have far-reaching consequences for the societies of the Gulf, which were modernizing at great speed, and would become after 50 years the nerve center of the Arab world and the major global players in the fields of energy and finance, as well as heritage and urban planning.

The French Research Centre of the Arabian Peninsula ( CEFREPA ), located in Kuwait  City and covering 7 countries ( GCC Countries and Yemen ) in the domains of the Humanities and Social Sciences, is dedicating two unprecedented events to this historic subject:

  1. An International conference featuring the best specialists on the subject.

2.An original exhibition showcasing textual and video archives gathered from French and Kuwait Institutions, and which will be presented for the first time in Kuwait.

The exhibition and the accompanying conference are related to the research themes addressed in Axis III << Spaces and Mobility in the Arabian Peninsula >>where several collegues explore from the social sciences ( history, geography, sociology, anthropology, political science ),the different forms of composition and re-composition of the space of the Arabian Peninsula in contemporary times. The relationship to space and it’s representation is considered in its human dimensions ( migration, demography ), economic ( development of cities, issues of oil and post-oil ) and socio-political ( constructions of identities, cosmopolitan cultures, social models ) and artistic ( architecture, visual arts, contemporary art history ).

” October 2023-1973. Fifty Years After The Oil Crisis: consequences, analyses, perspectives” explores in depth this event in its local and global dimensions and questions the effect it has had on geopolitics, finance, the economy and society. Even if the exhibition is mainly interested in the event as such, it allows us to have a reflexive return on a half-century that has shaped our relationship to resources and pushed peoples and states to become aware of how to manage and distribute them.

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