Tuesday, January 24, 2006

The book, Considérations sur le malheur arabe by Samir Kasir is an unoriginal tracing of Arab willingness to emulate Western modernity. It disguises itself as a work that is free of classic Orientalist assumptions (and there is one or two passing negative references to Bernard Lewis for that), but all what it does is to show that there were Arabs (yes mostly Christians, but some Muslims miraculously too) who knew how to internalize Western modernity. He even makes a reference to Freemasony in the Middle East as an example of Western compatibility with things Arab. But in the context of the academe of Lebanon, and in the annals of An-Nahar, Raphael Patai's observations are accepted as eternal dogmas of insightful analysis.