Arabs author Tim Mackintosh Smith E–book/E–pub
This book had me captivated until we arrived at the modern period What started as a brilliantly emphatic history of the Arabs Three Times the Love from before Islam till our times ended in a poor and biased coverage of the most recent hundred or so years Writtenrom his home in war torn Yemen his cynism over the meddling of modern empires like Britain and France and later of the United States in carving out modern borders can be excused What can t be excused is the lack of balance and historical depth in the later narrative I highly recommend the book The Drowning Man for the history of the premodern Arab world but it wont offer new insights in the recent history of the Arabs This was overall a pretty good book One of its best aspects is the elouent style and the depth of the author s knowledge of the subject matter Unfortunately however his knowledge seems to be biased towards the Middle East proper Arabia Levant Mesopotamia Egypt about which he writes profusely whereas the Maghreb is depicted with only some sketchy less satisfying details Thus many uninformed readers might assume that history unrolled in a or less similar manner in the Maghreb as it did in the Middle East and project the same events mentalities and aspirations on the the western part of the so called Arab world and its population This could not however beurther The Bride of Willow Creek from the truth While the author addressed some historical events such as the Banu Hilal invasion in the 11 13th century he did not explain how they contributed to the slow Arabization process of the Maghreb and how most of the Arabization inact took place in the 20th century under governments that sought to eradicate any aspect of non Arab culture or language Indeed at the beginning of the 20th century both Morocco and Algeria had a majority Berber aka Amazigh speaking population while literacy in Standard Arabic even after the independence GREAT INVESTMENT, THE from France was less than 5% Aggressive Arabization policies succeeded in less than 3 generations to bring the number of native speakers of Amazighrom above 60 70% conservative estimates to less than 30% And yet even modern Moroccan Algerian and Tunisian cultures and dialects bear heavy influences The Truth about the Drug Companies: How They Deceive Us and What to Do about It from the old Amazigh culture and languages openor view to those willing to look It seems rather unfair to lump these countries in such a The Lively Art of Writing facile manner into an Arab world without looking at their individual differences This is something that the author alludes to but does not explicitly mention than once perhaps since it would shake the whole premise of the book a common thread of Arab history woven through the ages or even bring it to naught Indeed this littleact lifts the mystery as to why Arabs never unite or are always united in division because the answer is really simple there is no Arab world there never has been and never will be At least not in a wide geographical sense encompassing the whole region of MENA It would be like trying to sueeze all of Europe into a Latin world and orce Europeans to use Latin as the sole official language It would not workWhat is called the Arab civilization was in act a network of interconnected civilizations that relied heavily on the use of Arabic or religious intellectual and administrative purposes and shared a common religion Islam But beyond that there was little resemblance The Moorish civilization in the territory of modern day Morocco Southern Iberia and West Algeria had its own characteristics such as a uniue architecture traditional clothing cuisine etc that distinguished it rom the rest of the so called Arab world I once sat with a Syrian colleague and we started comparing traditional dishes between our countries with *The Assistance Of Google Images We Could *assistance of Google Images We could ind a a single common dish between Morocco and Syria not a single one zero zilch How can this be the same civilization or the same culture when not even the most basic thing what people put on their tables thing what people put on their tables anything in commonThis was however a nice ride through time to understand the evolution of the Middle East and North Africa and I ind the book uite valuable if only to provide good material or criticism What ailed the author in the end. A riveting comprehensive history of the Arab peoples and tribes that explores the role of language as a cultural touchstone This kaleidoscopic book covers almost 3000 years of Arab history and shines a light on the ootloose Arab peoples and tribes who conuered lands and disseminated their language and culture over vast distances Tra.
Tim Mackintosh Smith ☆ 3 charactersDuction to the Arabs He spends longer or example covering the tradition of The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness foreign rulers sending an empty palanuin to Meccaor the Hajj than he does on the Suez Crisis the ormer *being a vehicle to explore and highlight bigger themes of identity change and belief than the *a vehicle to explore and highlight bigger themes of identity change and belief than the which arguably had a greater impact on Britain and France than it did on the Arab World anyway A basic grounding in the Arab World and the Arabs will therefore help the reader and the better one knows them the one is likely to take rom this book His exploration of their ability probably not uniue amongst Arabs but arguably refined by them to levels that no one else has achieved to pretend to ignore incontrovertible evidence in Zero to Five: 70 Essential Parenting Tips Based on Science (and What I've Learned So Far) front of their eyes in order to preserve a societal belief system and not rock the boat particularly resonated with me Something I learnt indirectly through the book is that the Arabs love of conspiracy theories with which I have had a lifelongrustration because of the extent to which it impedes self knowledge and growth seems to be rooted less in blaming outsiders as I have always thought than though no less destructive in supporting and preserving the societal status uo by not blaming their own leadersTim is a big lover and student of language often using the etymology of Arabic words to explore hidden meanings behind them His love of language extends to English with his use of written English being unuestionably scholarly I was grateful to be reading on a Kindle which enabled me to easily look up some of his erudite language something I ve never Serenity Role Playing Game felt a need to do when conversing with him his spoken English being that of a regular Joe This raises interesting uestions as to whom the book will appeal to As I wrote above the better one knows the Arab World the one will get out of this book butor those actually themselves Save the Cupcake! from the region the very scholarship of the book and I must emphasise that the book is one of lively scholarship and not dry academia is going to be a barrier you need to speak good English arguably better than most native English speakers to really get to grips with this book entirely A mutual Arabriend tells me that Tim s working on a translation of the book adding that this will undoubtedly mean that it s censored in some countries thereby making it a must read and therefore a best seller on the black market which comment is consistent with my previous point about pretending to ignore in order not to rock the boat The modern sections of the book dealing with the 19th century awakening Nasser pan Arabism and the rise of the autocrats and Islamists are by reason of their proximity the most accessible in the book What is remarkable about his coverage
of those periods is his understanding and analysis of the significance ofthose periods his understanding and analysis of the significance of very and even contemporary events in the wider sociological political and geopolitical development of the region over a period of time that runs into the millennia It is extremely hard to understand the wider significance of events as they are unfolding around you Tim does that convincingly though only time will tell if he has done so accuratelyThis is a book that starts strongly and then just gets stronger and stronger as it becomes and contemporary Very very impressive A must read Tressed to Kill (Southern Beauty Shop, for those with an interest in the region This book can t be rated The author is rabidly anti Israel As examples the books says that the only place that post holocaustJews could b One of the mostascinating books I have ever read Mackintosh Smith masterfully weaves the history of the Arabs through the lens of the evolution of the Arabic language articulating his mastery of the Arabic language and how it has shaped the people in turn I learned a massive amount Tressed to Kill from this book The history read like a thriller and the author is an incredible story teller However towards the end of the book the author s hatred of Israel and Zionism came out very strongly as could be expected in a book like this It was a shame the book was written that way but was also very informative to the Arab view of Zionism Nonetheless the book isascinating and I probably will read it agai. Istic developments rom pre Islamic poetry to the growth of script Muhammad’s use of writing and the later problems of printing Arabic have helped and hindered the progress of Arab history and investigates how even in today’s politically ractured post–Arab Spring environment Arabic itself is still a source of unity and disunit. Is the very thing that he only shyly admitted that there is no Arab world *That It Is In Fact *it is in The Dancer Who Flew: A Memoir of Rudolf Nureyev fact intermingled worlds each with their own evolution and history and that attempting to weld them into a single melting pot has most often resulted in disaster A book that tries to draw Arab history into a common thread would by definition have toail in a similar mannerWe should simply stop this utile exercise and each of our countries should igure out its own solutions or its own problems build its own identity based on its own history and endemic properties perhaps
#learning rom each other but not copy pasting In 1992 on a light #from each other but not copy pasting In 1992 on a light Cairo to Sana a I The Gingerbread Man and the Leprechaun Loose at School found myself sitting next to an Englishman of almost exactly my age who was returning to his home in Yemen Smalltalk developed into conversation which developed into an offer of a liftrom the airport into the city Once he had blagged his way through immigration he didn t have a visa the lift developed into an offer to stay at his house or the night which led to me using his house as my base or the next six weeks as I explored that magnificent country and got to know its extraordinary people That in turn led on to a The Gingerbread Man Loose in the School friendship which has now lasted nearly 30 yearsDuring that six weeks Tim began work on hisirst book Yemen Travels in Dictionary Land That won the Thomas Cook Travel Book of the Year in 1998 bizarrely another The Cutting Room: A Novel of Suspense friend was also shortlistedor the prize that year and he then went on to write a number of books and appear in a TV travelogue on Ibn Battuta whose 14th century voyages Tim spent a decade retracingGreat though those books were this latest of his is in another league entirely and deserves to become one of the classics of Middle Eastern scholarship This is not bias through riendship I ve given low marks or riends books on this website before Most extraordinary of all he wrote it in the middle of a civil war I have an email rom him dated about 18 months before publication in which he talks poignantly of a dinner party he attended at our house only two or three years earlier belonging to an unreachable past and throughout the book he makes reuent references to the conflict outside my window The book is very much a history of the Arabs rather than the history of the Arabs It starts in pre historic times and as with all histories that begin in pre history that section of the book is problematic being based on very limited information and necessarily being very speculative That said he deals with this difficult period admirably and whilst it may not be the most gripping section of the book it is ar absorbing than most pre historic sections in history books than one of which has caused me to abandon a bookWhat makes the pre historic section particularly interesting is that much of it is an exploration of exactly who the Arabs are This uestion develops into a central theme if not the central theme of the book Are they the settled agrarians of Southern Mesopotamia and Arabia Felix Are they the nomads of the desert region in between Are they the people who embraced Islam in the initial 7th century conuests and who unlike the Turks and Persians still preserve that culture Are they as the modern pan Arabists would have it anyone who speaks as the modern pan Arabists would have it anyone who speaks As the book progresses it becomes rooted in recorded history and therefore accessible getting ully into its stride when it reaches the time of Mohammad Even then and as he progresses rom Mohammed through the Umayyads and Abbasids he treats the chronology as being less important than the central theme of the book namely the exploration of the very identity of the Arabs Covering that period he The Cake House focuses therefore not on who conuered which territory and when but on the wider history of how the Arabs took their culture belief and identity to distant regions and saw them adopted by the inhabitants of those regions onlyor the conuerors themselves to gradually become isolated and disempowered not only in the lands that they had conuered but also in their own home territories This will The Essential Tantra: A Modern Guide to Sacred Sexuality frustrate someone lookingor a conventional history or someone looking The Wisdom of Psychopaths: What Saints, Spies, and Serial Killers Can Teach Us About Success for an entry level intro. Cing this process to the origins of the Arabic language rather than the advent of Islam Tim Mackintosh Smith begins his narrative than a thousand years before Muhammad andocuses on how Arabic both spoken and written has unctioned as a vital source of shared cultural identity over the millennia Mackintosh Smith reveals how lingu. .