Reading List

in imperial watch

Looking over the list (love that Excel Bible), I can’t help but think that any of the books mentioned in this older Middle East Greatest Hits list would be a far better choice.

Also, Juan Cole’s Napolean’s Egypt: Invading the Middle East just went paperback.

[List via Angry Arab]

ps. Only 30 copies of “Understanding Arabs: A Guide For Modern Times”? After all it has such excellent analysis (p. 57-58):

Among Arabs time is not as fixed and rigidly segmented as it tends to be among Westerners. It flows from past to present to future, and Arabs flow with it.

The Arabic word (and sentence) Ma’alish represents an entire way of looking at life and its frustrations. It means “Never mind” or “It doesn’t matter” or “Excuse me – it’s not that serious.” You will hear this said frequently when someone has had a delay, a disappointment, or an unfortunate experience. Rather than give in to pointless anger, Arabs often react to impersonally caused adversity with resignation and, to some extent, an acceptance of their fate.

Initial reactions by your Arab counterparts to your suggestions, ideas and proposals can be quite misleading if taken at face value. Arabs are not likely to criticize openly but are more likely to hint that changes are needed or to give more subtle indications that the proposal is unacceptable – by inaction, for instance.

If only Iraq was an impersonally caused adversity….

update: And another list…

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