Veiled irrelevance: a surprising point of connection?

As ever slow on the uptake, but I finally got round to reading Azar Nafisi’s beautifully written 2004 book, Reading Lolita in Tehran. It is a rich, highly thoughtful and thought-provoking memoir from an Iranian English literature professor about her life and students (in particular the small but diverse groupof women in her reading group). She meditates deeply on her culture, on their favourite authors and their books, on the simple wonders of reading. She makes extraordinary, unexpected connections – which aid understanding of both the literature and life in Tehran.

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Q marks the spot – Treasure Map 30 (March 2011)

Sacred Treasure A great deal has happened since - but it is definitely worth reading this remarkable letter from Dr Mouneer Hanna Anis, Bishop of Egypt, about the situation there (written on 2nd Feb). Tim Challies has a nice potted…

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Bernard Lewis’ What Went Wrong: Reflections on Islam & The West (1)

I'd not really appreciated before quite how controversial Bernard Lewis (left) is seen in some circles (perhaps especially because he was regularly consulted by the Bush administration - though others had before him). But one of the foremost western scholars of…

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