Middle East Journal: A Woman's Journey Into the Heart of the Arab World

Laila Abou-Saif, Author Scribner Book Company $22.95 (329p) ISBN 978-0-684-19136-2
Tumbling from these prolix, unfocused pages are multiple outspoken voices on the fractured Western-Arab relationship that should disturb complacent Americans. An Egyptian now living in the U.S., the author of A Bridge Through Time (as Laila Said) maintains that she presents the transcripts here of her interviews with Arab political and cultural leaders not as anti-Israel propaganda but ``simply to give insights to Westerners in order to help them gain a deeper understanding of the Arab-Israeli dilemma.'' A Marxist journalist tells her that America, Israel and Saudi Arabia promote religious extremism in Egypt; the editor of a Cairo magazine argues that the transformation of Egyptian society from ``a productive agricultural society'' to one whose ``symbols are dictated by American films'' was instigated by the Zionists; and Egyptian Nobel Laureate Naguib Mahfouz asserts that he is an admirer of Western culture and that ``the Palestinians are the victims of the Arabs before they became the victims of the Israelis.'' Rhetoric burdens remarks by Yassir Arafat and by the Supreme Guide of the Muslim Sisterhood alike. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1990
Release date: 01/01/1990
Hardcover - 329 pages - 978-0-533-14108-1
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