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Fear and Faith in Paradise: Exploring Conflict and Religion in the Middle East

Fear and Faith in Paradise: Exploring Conflict and Religion in the Middle East

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Published by RowmanLittlefield
From life along the Tigris River in the 1970s to the ongoing Arab Spring uprisings, Phil Karber has witnessed decades of change throughout the Middle East. Fear and Faith in Paradise draws on his wealth of experience to sketch a timely and compelling portrait of the region throughout history. Going beyond the endless images of terrorism and war, he challenges pervasive stereotypes of Muslims and delves into the living history and cultures of Arabs, Turks, Kurds, Persians, Jews, Tunisians, Moroccans, Armenians, and others.

Seamlessly moving between past and present, Karber skillfully develops two overarching themes: How America's footprint can be shifted from a military to a humanitarian emphasis and how fear is used as a cudgel by today’s monotheistic leaders to sacrifice the faithful. Whether Christian, Muslim, or Jewish, they all invoke their own vision of paradise, often as incentive, in hopeless conflicts that seem doomed to be repeated. Karber’s down-to-earth writing vividly conveys the region’s charm and beauty against a backdrop of power struggles among competing faiths, nationalisms, and outside forces.
From life along the Tigris River in the 1970s to the ongoing Arab Spring uprisings, Phil Karber has witnessed decades of change throughout the Middle East. Fear and Faith in Paradise draws on his wealth of experience to sketch a timely and compelling portrait of the region throughout history. Going beyond the endless images of terrorism and war, he challenges pervasive stereotypes of Muslims and delves into the living history and cultures of Arabs, Turks, Kurds, Persians, Jews, Tunisians, Moroccans, Armenians, and others.

Seamlessly moving between past and present, Karber skillfully develops two overarching themes: How America's footprint can be shifted from a military to a humanitarian emphasis and how fear is used as a cudgel by today’s monotheistic leaders to sacrifice the faithful. Whether Christian, Muslim, or Jewish, they all invoke their own vision of paradise, often as incentive, in hopeless conflicts that seem doomed to be repeated. Karber’s down-to-earth writing vividly conveys the region’s charm and beauty against a backdrop of power struggles among competing faiths, nationalisms, and outside forces.

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Categories:Books, Religion, Islam
Publish date: Jul 2012
Added to Scribd: Jul 31, 2012
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reservedISBN:9781442214798
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05/06/2015

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9781442214798

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Publishers Weekly reviewed this
Karber (The Indochina Chronicles), a travel writer whose previous books have explored Africa and Indochina, now turns his focus to the Middle East and parts of Muslim North Africa, chronicling for the reader his travels through Syria, Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq, Iran, Morocco, and Tunisia, where he attempts to understand the history and the culture of the region as a lens through which to view the turbulent political climate of the past decade. Karber is intrepid and inquisitive, with a lyrical prose style and a commendable eye for detail, and he has done copious background research, which makes the book rich with historical context; the density of historical exposition, however, can sometimes weigh down the larger travel narrative. Karber is ambitious in his efforts to both trace the history of religious and political conflicts in the region and explore the role of American intervention there, but with such a broad scope the book often falls short, leaving the reader alternately lost in trivia and subject to sweeping generalizations. Despite its flaws, however, the book is well worth reading, since it offers a fascinating glimpse into some underexplored countries and adds valuable color and context to the headlines. (Aug.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

2012-07-09, Publishers Weekly
Publishers Weekly reviewed this
Karber (The Indochina Chronicles), a travel writer whose previous books have explored Africa and Indochina, now turns his focus to the Middle East and parts of Muslim North Africa, chronicling for the reader his travels through Syria, Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq, Iran, Morocco, and Tunisia, where he attempts to understand the history and the culture of the region as a lens through which to view the turbulent political climate of the past decade. Karber is intrepid and inquisitive, with a lyrical prose style and a commendable eye for detail, and he has done copious background research, which makes the book rich with historical context; the density of historical exposition, however, can sometimes weigh down the larger travel narrative. Karber is ambitious in his efforts to both trace the history of religious and political conflicts in the region and explore the role of American intervention there, but with such a broad scope the book often falls short, leaving the reader alternately lost in trivia and subject to sweeping generalizations. Despite its flaws, however, the book is well worth reading, since it offers a fascinating glimpse into some underexplored countries and adds valuable color and context to the headlines. (Aug.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

2012-07-09, Publishers Weekly
Publishers Weekly reviewed this
Karber (The Indochina Chronicles), a travel writer whose previous books have explored Africa and Indochina, now turns his focus to the Middle East and parts of Muslim North Africa, chronicling for the reader his travels through Syria, Lebanon, Turkey, Iraq, Iran, Morocco, and Tunisia, where he attempts to understand the history and the culture of the region as a lens through which to view the turbulent political climate of the past decade. Karber is intrepid and inquisitive, with a lyrical prose style and a commendable eye for detail, and he has done copious background research, which makes the book rich with historical context; the density of historical exposition, however, can sometimes weigh down the larger travel narrative. Karber is ambitious in his efforts to both trace the history of religious and political conflicts in the region and explore the role of American intervention there, but with such a broad scope the book often falls short, leaving the reader alternately lost in trivia and subject to sweeping generalizations. Despite its flaws, however, the book is well worth reading, since it offers a fascinating glimpse into some underexplored countries and adds valuable color and context to the headlines. (Aug.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

2012-07-09, Publishers Weekly
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