This Arab Life: A Generation's Journey into Silence


Product Details

$16.99  $15.80
Bold Story Press
Publish Date
5.5 X 8.5 X 0.39 inches | 0.49 pounds

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About the Author

Amal Ghandour's career spans more than three decades in the fields of research, communication, and community development. She is the author of About This Man Called Ali. Ghandour holds an MS in International Policy from Stanford University.


"Unsparing of herself as 'informant, ' in a book that is at once painful and a delight to read, Amal Ghandour probes the conscience and circumstances of a small but very influential section of Arab society. Stylish, witty, and heartbreaking, this is a unique and critical contribution to our current soul-searching."

-Ahdaf Soueif is a novelist, an essayist, and an activist

"Amal Ghandour has written a nostalgic book with glimmers of brilliant personal, social and political observations and probing about Jordan and Lebanon, about wars and longings, about a rich life of upheavals and laments."

-Raja Shehadeh, Palestinian writer and lawyer, and founder of the human rights organization Al-Haq

"This Arab Life is a sweeping retrospective on a generation's historic complicity in the present travails plaguing the Arab world. The book is, at once, intimate, far-reaching, political, angry, melancholic, funny, and nostalgic. Ghandour's reflections on her life, and on the decisions taken by her and her peers as they came of age in the eighties and nineties, offers important insight for anyone seeking to understand how we got to where we are today in the region. The book is a cautionary tale of political acquiescence, and one that is, like many Arabs, stuck between an urgent impulse to act, to change, to hope, alongside an overwhelming sense of despair and apathy."

-Tarek Baconi, author of Hamas Contained: The Rise and Pacification of Palestinian Resistance and president of the board of al-Shabaka: The Palestinian Policy Network

"The Arab world hasn't fallen into silence. It has descended, not unlike other parts of the globe, into a logorrhea of reflexive grumbling, vacuous politics, and hopeless nostalgia. Amal Ghandour's voice pierces through this noise: analytic, female, rebellious, acid yet soothing, if only because so much of the corrosion she describes is just begging for her brand of intellectual rust remover. Ghandour taunts the very elites she belongs to with questions few of the privileged ever ask themselves: Wealth aside, what is our worth? Who are we, as an elite, if we do little more than indulge and free-ride? Her own answers rise from a unique blend of acute insights, touching vignettes, and downright introspection, all caught up in the region's traumatic historical arc, and bound together by Ghandour's ever so tight, elegant style."

-Peter Harling, founder of Synaps, a public interest research institute