Enter your mobile number below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
The Flight of the Intellectuals: The Controversy Over Islamism and the Press Paperback – March 29, 2011
Batman comics and crossovers
Legendary tales of the Dark Knight, including solo adventures and team-ups. Learn more
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
—Ron Rosenbaum, Slate
"Fascinating... This bracing and volatile book is an important one and devastating in its conclusions."
—Dwight Garner, The New York Times
"Paul Berman is, just like me and I think many others, surprised—and that’s an understatement—that some liberals choose to defend ideas that are very illiberal and choose to look away from practices that are even more illiberal. Why are they excusing radical Islam? That fascinates Berman and it also fascinates me, what the presence of Islam does to the liberal psyche in the West."
—Ayaan Hirsi Ali
"It has been quite astonishing to see how far and how fast there has been a capitulation to the believable threat of violence.... I join with Paul Berman in expressing utter astonishment at this phenomenon, or rather at the way that it is not a phenomenon."
“Berman… has a fair claim to being regarded as the Benda of our time. In The Flight of the Intellectuals he continues his work of redeeming the good name of intellectuals by exposing the corrupt among them.”
—Anthony Julius, New York Times Book Review
“How do you distinguish a jihadist from a ‘moderate’ Muslim? Paul Berman's Flight of the Intellectuals brilliantly dissects the moral confusion and cowardice that contrives to sway some brave men and women. Must reading for our times.”
—Harold Evans, Daily Beast
—Michael Young, Slate
Praise for Paul Berman
“One of our most gifted essayists, a deeply pensive writer with a lyrical talent for imaginative synthesis.”
—The Boston Globe
“One of America’ s best exponents of recent intellectual history.”
About the Author
From the Hardcover edition.
Top Customer Reviews
But it seems to me quite right that this book should have such influence. To begin with, in it, Paul Berman provides the reader with context in spades. Here is Hassan al-Banna (Tariq Ramadan's grandfather) lavishing extravagant praise on the mufti of Jerusalem. Al-Banna declares, "Germany and Hitler are gone, but Amin Al-Husseini will continue the struggle.Read more ›
The article, which is pretty long (I printed 37 pages), is available online for free if you want to check it out before you buy this important book.
The greater percentage of the book is a critique of Ian Baruma's article on Tariq Ramadan that appeared in the New York Times Magazine in 2007. This extensive critique of a specific writer discussing a leading Swiss Muslim philosopher illuminates Berman's assessment of western intellectuals' response to radical Islam, which he describes as "a coverage animated by earnest good intentions, but, then again, by squeamishness and fear. And by less-than-good intentions."
Berman clarifies the intellectual line of descent in Ramadan's thought from Hassan al Banna (Ramadan's grandfather)through Jerusalem's Grand Mufti Amin al-Husseini and Sayid Qutb. Berman challenges Ramadan to explain why he refuses to clearly reject the violent extremism of such figures, and why, when writing of them, Ramadan dances around such a lurid anti-semitism and exterminationist agenda as was embraced by the the Mufti.Read more ›
The focus on a largely obscure dispute, at least to the general public (narrowly defined as outside the strictured confines of the readership of "The New York Review of Books" [NYRB] and "The New Republic" [TNR]) might strike the potential reader as a very arcane and parochial effort, one unworthy of the time and concentration needed to read it.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Berman needs no introduction to those who follow current affairs, but I assign selections from this book in an upper division course on world religion. Read morePublished on February 1, 2014 by Editor, SFHR
300 pages of Paul Berman wailing about the minutiae of Tariq Ramadan's inconsistencies and offering no world-saving solutions of any depth sounds like a recipe for a yawner, but... Read morePublished on January 29, 2013 by Andrew Andrew
For the objective reader with little knowledge of the author's stated topic (Tariq Ramadan), this book is a very difficult read. Read morePublished on November 13, 2010 by Trav Hallen
Tariq Ramadan, Arab but Swiss-born, Francophone but professor at Cambridge, has two faces. The first is that of the liberal, thoroughly European and Westernized liberal, charming... Read morePublished on August 24, 2010 by Werner Cohn
Content great but a bit tedious at times. A very timely and under discussed and reported commentary on a very important national issue.Published on August 12, 2010 by Golfer
Paul Berman, "Flight of the Intellectuals" (2010)
In earlier books, Paul Berman has made critical analyses of the new left of 68 ("Power and the Idealists") and political... Read more
This book basically expands and extends Berman's arguments from his (thirty-seven page long) magazine article "Who's Afraid of Tariq Ramadan?", as printed in the New Republic. Read morePublished on August 7, 2010 by Eli Gottlieb
On February 14, 1989, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini issued a fatwa--or legal ruling--against Salman Rushdie, sentencing him to death in absentia for the crime of writing a novel that... Read morePublished on July 29, 2010 by George P. Wood