Document Type : Research Article
Associate Professor of Social Science Department, Tehran University
PhD Candidate of Sociology, Tehran University
The prevailing belief in the studies of historical sociology is that associations and organizations have been always inactive in the cities of Iran. This paper, based on sociological approach, is to show that in the late middle centuries in Iran, the artisans in interaction with Futuwwa organizations formed a kind of guild, which have been different from medieval guilds in the West. The sociological framework of this paper is based on pre-modern guilds, derived from Durkheim's views. Based on this framework, the guilds in the late middle centuries in Iran, in conjunction with Sufi Futuwwa organizations, formed a kind of guild that can be called a "religious guild". What made guilds more organized and coherent as professional associations in the cities during this period was the Sufi Futuwwa as a religion, which prioritized over the professional interests of the members. The guild was able to achieve coherence and formalization only by relying on the religion and religious association. This shows how much the nature and organization of the ideology governing the market guilds in Iranian cities in each period is important.