324pp. 2002 revised edition. Paperback. Very good condition.
Recent world events have produced an outpouring of books on the Middle East. There are, however, few syntheses available by anthropologists---the very individuals who have long been immersed in the study of this region and its peoples. In The Islamic Middle East: Tradition and Change, noted anthropologist Charles Lindholm offers readers a rare, thought-provoking account of the origins, nature, and evolution of Islam and provides a historical perspective vital to understanding the contemporary Middle East. Lindholm argues that much of the West, and the United States in particular, shares fundamental values with the Middle East - values that have fueled dispute but could also provide a basis for dialogue. He boldly seeks to reconcile widely touted negative attitudes toward blacks, slaves, and women-which have been reified in many Middle Eastern cultures-with Islamic belief in the equality of all humans.;Arguing that the Middle East is characterized by a pervasive ethic of equality and individualism, much like the United States, this book considers the painful paradox of egalitarian peoples living under despotic regimes as well as the present prospects for resistance to authority and emancipation from tyranny. Written with verve and wit, The Islamic Middle East provides a rare opportunity for understanding.