Wednesday, January 24, 2007

From Friedman's column today: "The brutally honest Syrian-born poet Ali Ahmad Said, known as Adonis, gave an interview from Paris on March 11, 2006, with Dubai TV*, and warned of what’s at stake (translation by Memri): “The Arab individual is no less smart, no less a genius, than anyone else in the world. He can excel — but only outside his society." Really? But Adonis' own career refutes that theory. Adonis excelled but only INSIDE his society. He excelled when he wrote in Syria and Lebanon; but when he went OUTSIDE his society, he never wrote anything memorable.
*No. Friedman does not watch Arab TV; and can't understand it even if he watches it. But he can read MEMRI reports..
PS And shouldn't Adonis offer some royalties to the estate of Raphael Patai? I mean, he never offers any observations on Arab society that were not mentioned in The Arab Mind.