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Infidel Paperback – April 1, 2008
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From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. Readers with an eye on European politics will recognize Ali as the Somali-born member of the Dutch parliament who faced death threats after collaborating on a film about domestic violence against Muslim women with controversial director Theo van Gogh (who was himself assassinated). Even before then, her attacks on Islamic culture as "brutal, bigoted, [and] fixated on controlling women" had generated much controversy. In this suspenseful account of her life and her internal struggle with her Muslim faith, she discusses how these views were shaped by her experiences amid the political chaos of Somalia and other African nations, where she was subjected to genital mutilation and later forced into an unwanted marriage. While in transit to her husband in Canada, she decided to seek asylum in the Netherlands, where she marveled at the polite policemen and government bureaucrats. Ali is up-front about having lied about her background in order to obtain her citizenship, which led to further controversy in early 2006, when an immigration official sought to deport her and triggered the collapse of the Dutch coalition government. Apart from feelings of guilt over van Gogh's death, her voice is forceful and unbowed—like Irshad Manji, she delivers a powerful feminist critique of Islam informed by a genuine understanding of the religion. 8-page photo insert. (Feb.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Bookmarks Magazine
Although Ayaan Hirsi Ali remains Public Enemy #1 for radical Muslims, she refuses to be silenced. In this captivating memoiran act of courage itselfshe shares the evolution of her values, beliefs, and identity, all propelled by an urgent mission to educate Western countries about the bigotries of other nations. Set against a terrifying geopolitical landscape of African wars and Muslim fundamentalism, Hirsi Ali addresses timely topics: the plight of refugees and women; the Muslim clan system; forced marriage; political asylum; and, perhaps most significantly, her own personal religious crisis. Written in descriptive, clear prose, Infidel, with its radical feminist criticism of Islam, offers a disturbing view of the modern worldand inspired every critic who read it.
Copyright © 2004 Phillips & Nelson Media, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
My gripe with Ayaan is along the same line as her other book, Heretic. She has lived a challenging life which has led her to many solid and valuable conclusions, but lacks fundamentals.
By way of political science and law and economics she found her way to politics and from politics gained the influence awarded to public figures. But, to the point, never once in her writing does she personally discern a definition of individual rights, or freedom, or a proper constitutional framework that solidifies the things she is trying to profess.
What she lacks is a solid philosophical foundation. How can you take a political stand when you have no concrete understanding of a proper ethics? How can you support women's rights, in Parliament, when the very form of government itself is the result of unsound ethics, much like Islam? These issues never get identified or reconciled, likely for the reason mentioned.
Ayaan has a window into faith that we must look through. Yet, I am still waiting for the full system of thought to develop from her.
In the meantime, watching her progress is exciting and still valuable.