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Empires of the Sand - The Struggle for Mastery in the Middle East 1789-1923 (Anglais) Broché – 2 avril 2001

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Efraim Karsh is Professor and Director of the Mediterranean Studies Program at King's College, London.

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Couverture | Table des matières | Extrait | Index | Quatrième de couverture
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Amazon.com: HASH(0x9cf4406c) étoiles sur 5 20 commentaires
58 internautes sur 59 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9d096c54) étoiles sur 5 The making of the modern Middle East 7 août 2000
Par Frank J. Konopka - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
This is an excellent revisionist history of how the modern Middle East came into existence. It turns completely around the conventional theory that the Western countries were directly and solely responsible for what happened during and after World War I in the area of the Ottoman Empire. The authors place much of the blame for the results on the Ottoman leadership iteself, and the political land-grabbing of the Hashemite family. Not being an expert in this area, I have adopted a neutral attitude in this controversy, and am more than willing to read works that contradict this idea. My one quibble with this book, and it caused my rating to be lowered, is that there is an almost complete absence of adequate maps of the areas in question. To discuss places not normally familiar to Western readers, it is essential that works provide maps as references. I was continually frustrated throughout my reading when I couldn't find a map that showed a place that was under discussion in the text.
44 internautes sur 50 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9ce6b09c) étoiles sur 5 Understanding What Was, Is and Will Be 27 janvier 2001
Par Lester Mann - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
This book. the first of the authors that I read had been recommnded in passing by The Wall Street Journal. I found it to be a remarkable work. It presents historical perspectives not to be found in other "mid-east" works. And it is remarkably well written. Unlike many fine histories it does not periodically lapse into obtuseness and vagueness.
Furthermore, it has legs. It was the first history book that my wife read over the past ten years and she came away, altered in her perceptions as well as impressed. I then sent it to my so who is a distinguished Cardiac researcher who rarely these days can spare reading time away from material in his own speciality area. He too could not put it down.
It is a pity that books such as this do not get the comprehensive audiences they deserve.
33 internautes sur 38 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9ce6b0f0) étoiles sur 5 Excellent Book 29 mai 2000
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
This book does a lot to rectify the cult of victimization and anti-Arab conspiracy theories prevalent in analysies and histories of the Arab world. It should be read in conjunction with the works of Bernard Lewis, especially his short volumes The Arabs in History and Islam and the West.
14 internautes sur 15 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9ce6b270) étoiles sur 5 The Karshes set the record straight 29 décembre 2006
Par Frank Bunyard - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Professors Efriam and Inari Karsh (husband and wife) have produced a tour de force and a sound rebuttal to the standard interpretation of modern Middle Eastern History. According to the orthodox version during the early 1920's a domineering, imperial Europe imposed its will on a humble and enervated Middle East. Perhaps the best account of the orthodox view is David Fromkin's "A Peace to End All Peace" (1989).

Using original sources and masterful scholarship the Karshes' effectively refute the Fromkin version. (The Karshes refer to Fromkin's standard history as a "caricature" (p. 351).) In the orthodox view the Germans swindled the naïve Ottomans into an alliance in WWI. But the Karshes' researches reveal that it was the ambitious young Ottoman rulers who took the initiative and rushed into an alliance with Germany in hopes of territorial expansion and restoration of the great days of Ottoman power. And this alliance for aggrandizement by the Ottomans is, according to the Karshes, "by far the most important decision in the history of the modern Middle East." In effect it was the Ottomans' hubris and lust for power that brought them down, by forming an alliance with Germany, the losing power in WWI.

And after WWI, far from being supine, the Arabs were busy vying for their own, smaller religious and ethnic groups, which were in constant conflict with one another. If the Great Powers had not pushed for the formation of larger states, the Arabs would have fallen into innumerable small clannish social units - which would have forever been in total chaos with internecine power struggles.

Arab Middle Easterners since the early 1920's have blamed Europe (and the West in general) for their failed states, failed economies and failure in general to get along in the modern world. According to the Karshes the Middle Easterners are largely responsible for their own destinies. Far from being victims, they have created their own modern existence. "Western Guilt" has no basis in historical reality.
26 internautes sur 32 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9ce6b21c) étoiles sur 5 Good background, poor reading. 2 juin 2004
Par T. Lahr - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
Fighting urges to put this book down after the first 100 pages, I finally finished after a couple days what I felt was a bland historical work, that's definately worth reading. Understanding the events leading up to the fall of the Ottoman Empire and the creation of nation states in the Middle East is imperitive if one wants access to the situation that is currently being played out. In many ways the majority of problems plauging the M.E. right now are directly related to the time period this book deals with. I felt that the book gave me a far more solid understanding of post-empire mid east than I received in a university level history course. However, without previous exposure to Sykes-Picot, or the Hussein-McMahon letters (to name a few) the information from Karsh's book would not have stuck. I therefore reccomend this book for people who already have some knowlege about mid east history (musn't be anything special or thorough) and a desire to learn the dry basics before moving on. It's is also worth mentioning that Karsh's thesis is good counter-argument to a lot written about these issues, but hardly stands alone as the full and final truth of the matter. For that, this book is just the beginning.
One more note, the maps in this book are terrible and confusing with most important towns and borders left out. Studying the Middle East without good maps makes the job a whole lot harder. Just a thought.
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