Beautifully told – The Arabs: A History

There are 2 popular histories of the Arabs. John Keay’s Sowing the Wind is published in 2004. Eugene Rogan’s The Arabs A History is published in 2009.

I read Keay’s book in 2004. Sowing the wind is a biblical phrase from Hosea 8:7. It aptly describes the seeds of violence planted initially by Britain and France from 1900 to 1960 and continued thereafter by the Americans.

Keay covers the period from the 1900 to 1960. His writing is easy to read. He covers the ground well.

Rogan’s book which I read in 2010 covers the period from the 16th century to 2009. He tells the history from the Arab perspective using Arabic sources. The end result is a very impressive book. This is a review of the first edition.

Both books give a different perspective to the genesis of the problems that still persist in the Middle East. There is really no solution.

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