Buy New
  • List Price: $29.95
  • Save: $1.80 (6%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
In Stock.
Ships from and sold by
Gift-wrap available.
Blaming the Victims: Spur... has been added to your Cart
Trade in your item
Get a $2.00
Gift Card.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

Blaming the Victims: Spurious Scholarship and the Palestinian Question Paperback – September 17, 2001

ISBN-13: 978-1859843406 ISBN-10: 1859843409 Edition: Subsequent

Buy New
Price: $28.15
27 New from $21.45 24 Used from $11.34
Amazon Price New from Used from
"Please retry"
$21.45 $11.34

Frequently Bought Together

Blaming the Victims: Spurious Scholarship and the Palestinian Question + Orientalism + The Question of Palestine
Price for all three: $48.28

Buy the selected items together
  • Orientalism $10.50
  • The Question of Palestine $9.63


Best Books of the Month
Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Verso; Subsequent edition (September 17, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1859843409
  • ISBN-13: 978-1859843406
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.9 x 8.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #902,315 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The aim of these exhaustive, detailed essays and book reviews is to highlight what Said, a professor at Columbia, calls in his introduction the "grotesque, almost parodistic garishness" of pro-Israeli, anti-Palestinian scholarship in the West, particularly in the U.S., where, he says, "it is as if even the narrative of Palestinian history is not tolerable." In one piece, Said examines the reception of Joan Peters's book, From Time Immemorial: The Origins of the Arab-Jewish Conflict over Palestine, which argues that most of the Arabs in Palestine in 1948 were recent arrivals from other parts of the Arab world: despite widespread enthusiasm in the U.S., the book was greeted with embarrassed disavowal in Israel and a critical thrashing for shoddy methodology in Britain. Hitchens, a columnist for the Nation, attempts to debunk the longstanding Israeli argument that Palestinians left their homes in 1948 because Arab governments made broadcasts urging them to do so, not because Israelis forced them out. Noam Chomsky maintains that in the 1980s, in the U.S., terrorism as applied to the Middle East "refers to terrorist acts by Arabs, but not by Jews, just as 'peace' means a settlement that honors the right of national self-determination of Jews, but not of Palestinians." Other contributors argue that there was an Israeli policy in 1948 of expulsion of Arab civilians, discuss the characteristics of Palestinian population over the centuries, and so on. This is a challenging book.
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


“The wide-ranging scope and demythologising structure of Blaming the Victims makes it especially relevant at the present time when the actions of the state of Israel seem to contradict received opinion as to its nature. The book provides a great quantity of information, analyses it convincingly and, through an impressive body of notes on primary and secondary literature, points the reader in the direction of further information.”—Middle East International

“These forcefully argued treatises will be as enlightening as they are disturbing for anyone with an interest in Middle East politics.”—ALA Booklist

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

3.5 out of 5 stars
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

23 of 32 people found the following review helpful By J. ABDO on October 12, 2009
Format: Paperback
This is an excellent and must read on the conflict, but it is very academic, I should warn you. It reads like a textbook rather than human interest, so it is hard to get into, but it is worth the trouble.

This is a great explanation of the often neglected Palestinian point of view. The Israeli position is always well supported, understood and explained in our media and government; you will be a step ahead of the majority by reading this book since you will know both sides.

In a world where criticism of Israel = anti-Semitism, you have to do yourself a favor and read this book!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
37 of 52 people found the following review helpful By David Kamper on May 23, 2006
Format: Paperback
This collection of essays draws from a wealth of scholars to support the existence of Palestine before and after the rise of Zionism. The authors therein never once resort to the name-calling tactics of Zionist supporters, but rather intelligently dissect the Zionist agenda and put it to shame as the bigoted movement it is.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
54 of 77 people found the following review helpful By Dan Willard on July 29, 2005
Format: Paperback
This is an excellent book. Edward Said, in a collection of material, demolishes the scholarship of hate as practiced in Israel. That scholarship reached its absurd peak when Israelis started writing books to prove that Palestinians simply didn't exist and were never a majority in what is now Israel and occupied territories. What Said misses is that in the end, the stupidity and basic lie of the scholarship has only led to damage the Israeli cause internationally. In essence, its a self-destructive activity. The only consumers of it being Bible Belt Christians Conservatives in the rural and southern united states and at best the fringe of the right wing in Israel.

Do what they might, they can't undo the basic reality that the first census conducted after the creation of palestine showed a population of over 600,000 non-jews and 83,000 jews. And every other census before and after shows a stable and growing palestinian population over time. So what can they do when the basic facts are so firmly against their claims? They go to "scholarly works" like the travel accounts of Mark Twain to prove that the land was utterly empty until they arrived.

The true reason for all this scholarship in the end is to justify Israel's actions in expelling palestinians by force in 1948 during the war. Its well documented that in 1948 that even the villages the palestinians had lived in were erased with dynamite so that no trace of the homes of those who had lived in what is now Israel for centuries would remain.

The other purpose behind the scholarship is to prepare Israel mentally to accept the preferred solutions of the far right to the problem of palestinians. That solution is "transfer". Rounding them up in trucks and pushing them over the border into other countries.
Read more ›
2 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
59 of 93 people found the following review helpful By Srebrenica Forever on May 23, 2003
Format: Paperback
By way of introduction, the obvious cannot be overstressed here, namely that Israel is the occupier and therefore the aggressor while the Palestinians are the occupied and therefore the victims. Paradoxically, this fact is hardly ever even taken into consideration by western politicians, thus ignoring the fundamental element of the conflict. Needless to say, attempting to solve this conflict without differentiating between the aggressor (Israel) and the victimized (the Palestinians) will never lead to permanent peace. According to Said, understanding the root causes of the extremist movements in the Palestine is crucial. People turn to extreme measures when in extreme despair and agony. Surely, no one chooses to blow himself in the air when happy and contented with life. Instead, it is in situations in which people see no other way out but to resort to terrorist actions. Needless to say, understanding why terrorism exists does not mean that it is justifiable and morally acceptable. On the contrary, violence is never a solution to any problem. Instead, it can only further aggravate matters. Killing innocent people is always wrong and morally reprehensible. Said further claims that Israeli government mainly consists of extremists and fundamentalists. This is never mentioned in mainstream media; the sole focus is on Islamic fundamentalists. Western politicians never ask themselves the fundamental question: why does terrorism emerge? Said recognizes a number of factors, the most important of which are injustice, poverty, subjugation, inferiority and discrimination. Thus, terrorism is not a result of justice and equality. Israel commits terrorist actions every day and violates international law but no one condemns nor criticizes Israeli government. Instead, the U.S.Read more ›
2 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Alyssa A. Lappen TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 2, 2004
Format: Paperback
The unhappy title of this book is no accident. It attempts to play on a problem that has plagued the Jewish people throughout history. The Arabs of Palestine have certainly been victimized. But unlike the Jews, who have consistently been victimized by others, the Arabs can legitimately blame only their own misguided leaders for their predicament. The supreme irony in the book's audacious subtitle is that its authors dare to accuse others of sins they have themselves committed many times over in this book.

Rashid Khalidi especially claims that the population of Palestine was overridden by Europeans. But this is false: In 1554 the land was populated by 205,000 Moslems, Christians and Jews, whose numbers reached only 275,000 by 1800. Records from 1830, 1863, 1878 and 1893 and 1917 show that when the heaviest Jewish immigration began in 1880, a large proportion of the 425,000 to 440,000 Arabs in Palestine were themselves recent immigrants.

Palestine fellaheen, urban dwellers and Bedouin were thinned and forced out by Ibrahim Pasha's 1831 invasion, a great 1837 earthquake and successive epidemics. In 1880, the Arabs in Israel were mostly Egyptians who settled in large numbers in Akko (6,000 in 1831 alone), Jaffa (in 1893, the majority) and the Beit Shean, Jordan and Hula Valleys.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Most Recent Customer Reviews

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?