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House of Stone: A Memoir of Home, Family, and a Lost Middle East par [Shadid, Anthony]
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House of Stone: A Memoir of Home, Family, and a Lost Middle East Format Kindle


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Longueur : 337 pages Word Wise: Activé Composition améliorée: Activé
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Description du produit

Revue de presse

"Six pages into this book, I said to myself, if Anthony Shadid continues like this, this book will be a classic. And page by page, he did continue, and he wrote a honest-to-God, hands-down, undeniable and instant classic. This is a book about war, and terrible loss, and a troubled region, and his own tattered family history, yes, but it’s written with the kind of levity and candor and lyricism we associate with, say, Junot Diaz — and that makes the book, improbably, both a compulsive read and one you don’t want to end. I have no idea how Shadid pulled all this off while talking about the history of modern Lebanon, how he balanced ribald humor and great warmth with the sorrow woven into a story like this, but anyway, we should all be grateful that he did."

— Dave Eggers, author of Zeitoun and What Is the What

 

"Anthony Shadid’s beautifully rendered memoir is a rich account of a man’s gradual immersion into the world of the Middle East and the culture of the Levant, a kingdom almost unrecognizable today, where the rooms and hallways of his great-grandfather’s house tell stories that will linger with every reader for decades."

— André Aciman, author of Out of Egypt

 

"House of Stone is poignant, aching, and at times laugh-out-loud funny . . . Shadid's writing is so lyrical it's like hearing a song."

— David Finkel, author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning The Good Soldier

 

"House of Stone is a haunting, beautifully realized piece of writing."

— Nick Flynn, author of The Ticking Is the Bomb

 

"What a beautiful introduction to a world that I knew so little about. House of Stone is engaging, poignant, and funny."

— Abraham Verghese, author of Cutting for Stone

 

"I was captivated, instantly, by Anthony Shadid's lushly evocative prose. Crumbling Ottoman outposts, doomed pashas, and roving bandits feel immediate, familiar, and relevant. Lose yourself in these pages, where empires linger, grandparents wander, and a battered Lebanon beckons us home. Savor it all. If Márquez had explored nonfiction, Macondo would feel as real as Marjayoun."

— Dave Cullen, author of Columbine

 

"Evocative and beautifully written, House of Stone . . . should be read by anyone who wishes to understand the agonies and hopes of the Middle East."

— Kai Bird, Pulitzer Prize-winning historian and author of Crossing Mandelbaum Gate

 

"In rebuilding his family home in southern Lebanon, Shadid commits an extraordinarily generous act of restoration for his wounded land, and for us all."

— Annia Ciezadlo, author of Day of Honey

 

"Few books provide such a subtle, yet powerful insight into the tragedy of today’s Middle East."

— Amin Maalouf, author of Origins: A Memoir

 

"A riveting, soulful, and candid journey . . ."

— Robin Wright, author of Rock the Casbah

Présentation de l'éditeur

“Wonderful . . . One of the finest memoirs I’ve read.” — Philip Caputo, Washington Post

In the summer of 2006, racing through Lebanon to report on the Israeli invasion, Anthony Shadid found himself in his family’s ancestral hometown of Marjayoun. There, he discovered his great-grandfather’s once magnificent estate in near ruins, devastated by war. One year later, Shadid returned to Marjayoun, not to chronicle the violence, but to rebuild in its wake.

So begins the story of a battle-scarred home and a journalist’s wounded spirit, and of how reconstructing the one came to fortify the other. In this bittersweet and resonant memoir, Shadid creates a mosaic of past and present, tracing the house’s renewal alongside the history of his family’s flight from Lebanon and resettlement in America around the turn of the twentieth century. In the process, he memorializes a lost world and provides profound insights into a shifting Middle East. This paperback edition includes an afterword by the journalist Nada Bakri, Anthony Shadid’s wife, reflecting on his legacy.

“A poignant dedication to family, to home, and to history . . . Breathtaking.” — San Francisco Chronicle

“Entertaining, informative, and deeply moving . . . House of Stone will stand a long time, for those fortunate enough to read it.” — Telegraph (London)

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 1696 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 337 pages
  • Editeur : Mariner Books; Édition : Reprint (28 février 2012)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ASIN: B007BFXAXQ
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Amazon.com: 4.3 étoiles sur 5 151 commentaires
5 internautes sur 5 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Why the Arab obsession with home? 14 juin 2012
Par Hussain Abdul-Hussain - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
America celebrates immigration. Over the past few centuries, almost everyone who has moved here has found it welcoming, has had little trouble integrating, and - over a fairly short period of time - has found it inviting to call the country home. But not for the late New York Times reporter Anthony Shadid.

Born and raised in Oklahoma to second-generation Lebanese-American parents, Shadid was attracted to a different world, one that is not only thousands of miles away, but one hundred years back. In his House of Stone, Shadid described a "project" that he had undertaken. He moved back to his ancestral homeland in Marjayoun, south of Lebanon, and started renovating the long-vacant house of Isber Samara, his great grandfather.

"My family wasn't here," he wrote. "They had shown little interest in my project." Shadid said that on those occasions when he spoke to his daughter, Leila, she asked him what he was doing so far away, to which he answered: "Rebuilding our home." Shadid dreamt "of the day [he] would bring her... to a house she could call hers."

But why was Shadid exactly looking for a "house/home." What was wrong with Oklahoma where he grew up, or Maryland, where Leila lived with her mother, his ex-wife?
Shadid was not the first Arab-American to search for a place to call home. Before him, the late Edward Said, a Palestinian-American professor at the University of Columbia, published his memoirs in a book called "Out of Place."

And like Said, Sahdid mainly blamed the West for his lost home. Both men used their remarkably beautiful prose, ironically not in their native Arabic but in English, to describe the presumably harmonious Arab world that once existed before World War I, and before the colonials - first Britain and France and later the United States - wiped it out.

"Artificial and forced, instruments themselves of repression, the borders were their obstacle, having wiped away what was best about the Arab world," Shadid wrote. "They hewed to no certain logic; a glimpse at any map suggests as much. The lines are too straight, too precise to embrace the ambiguities of geography and history. They are frontiers without frontiers, ignorant of trajectories shaped by centuries, even millennia."

However, unlike Said who wrote about his displacement from the luxury of his Manhattan Apartment in New York, Shadid decided to do something about it. He immigrated back to Lebanon and was set to restore his ancestor's House of Stone to its past glory. "[I]magine I can bring back something that was lost," he argued.

That something was "Isber's world, which, while simpler, was no less tumultuous than my own." This begs the question: If Isber's world was disorderly, why blame the colonial borders for wiping "away what was best about the Arab world." And if Isber's world was already chaotic, why bring it back and insist on calling it home?

House of Stone is the story of Shadid's renovation project in southern Lebanon, interjected with his reconstruction of the history of his family in Marjayoun, and their emigration to the United States.

Along the way, Shadid narrated, mainly to a Western audience, the daily routine of his project, which included recruiting masons, haggling with suppliers and talking to friends. His narration, however, has a number of mistakes that gives away Shadid being a non-native. Despite his best effort to learn the Arabic language and culture during college days, Shadid still fell short of grasping all of the intricacies of Arab life.

For instance, when describing a fruit street vendor, Shadid wrote: "Bateekh, bateekh, bateekh, ala al sikeen ya bateekh," and translated it into: "Watermelon, watermelon, watermelon... a watermelon ready for the knife." While the translation might pass, Shadid missed the cultural nuance. When a Lebanese customer goes to buy a watermelon, he usually asks for assurances from the vendor about its "redness" and "sweetness." The vendor usually replies confidently that his watermelons are the best and takes out a knife offering to cut a small piece as a tasting sample to prove his claim. When vendors push their carts down the streets of Lebanon and shout "al sikeen ya batteekh," they don't mean "ready for the knife," like Shadid thought. Their "knife" call is an invitation to customers to challenge their claim.

In another paragraph, Shadid wrote: "In the Middle East, the tiles came to be known as sajjadeh, one of the Arabic words for carpet." In Arabic, at least in Lebanon, tiles mean blat. It is customary - especially in old houses - for tiles to be arranged in patterns to display nice geometric shapes, in which case they would be called "sajjadeh," or carpet.

Shadid died a few months ago because of his allergy to horses while being smuggled out of Syria where he had finished covering the ongoing revolution there. His book had not been published yet.

The book, his understanding of the heritage of his ancestors and their culture, summarizes his attempt to recreate what he thought was their better world, and live in it. That world, which perhaps never existed, he wanted to call home.

Shadid was cremated and his ashes thrown over the House of Stone and over the world that never existed, the world that he never barely got a chance to live in.
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Poignant, emotional and historical 16 avril 2017
Par Niftyfriend - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
A multi-generational story about Shadid's rebuilding his great-grandfather's house, he creates a mosaic of histories of his family, and the families of his friends and the builders.

He weaves the home's history and his families and friends histories with that of Lebanon and the nation's history before, during and after independence. His writing also an overview of Lebanon's civil war.

While a glossary with some of Arabic words might have been helpful, the book was obviously a passion for the writer and hopefully most of the readers will learn and understand those words through the context of the book.

I'm traveling to Lebanon in sixty days to stay with a Lebanese friend and her family. Thank you Mr. Shadid for sharing part of your country with me. Rest in peace.
2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Anthony Shadid and the dynamics of the Arab World , Culture, Family and Blood Relationships 30 décembre 2013
Par Fred Farha - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
Simply brilliant, authoritative, inspiring, historically factual. To understand the dynamics of the Arab World, culture, family and blood relationships, tribal and badoo temperaments, the unbroken human chain of the Hawarna(emanating from the planes of Houran in today's Syria near the Jordanian border, before that they immigrated from Maarrib Yemen. They are today's families (the Farhas, Rashids, Shadids, Barakats, Rahalls, Samaras and many others) the beiyout singular Beit)and Dars'(houses of stones) they left in Judida (MarjOyoun) in the wake of their migration 1890- 1930, mainly to America and Brazil. Anthony vividly recalled in the appropriate nostalgic overtones their story, that only a Hourani, the Hawarna, the badoo can tell. These heart breaking events, a badoo leaving the land of their tribal youth, breaking a holy bond between them and their land, it must be said that Anthony masterfully set the tone and captured the feeling of those history and events forced them to abandon their Diar (homestead) with such warmth and special sense of humor. Rarely a writer stay the whole course of his or her journey with his/her readers. Anthony did exactly that. Anthony with you in every page building the walls of his house of stone, stone by stone, with his readers and generously sharing his and the emotion of his family's odyssey to the promiseland, America.I must admit, that Anthony and his House of Stone next to The Prophet of Gibran are on my night table. Reading Anthony's House of Stone brings back sweet memories of my childhood and rekindle my pride of being a Hourani

Fred L. Farha
Ottawa Canada
3 internautes sur 3 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Must read for anyone interested in Lebanon 4 mai 2012
Par CMC - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
"House of Stone" is a primer on Lebanon. Anthony Shadid beautifully illuminates the larger themes of the Middle East - language, ancient and modern history, and war, while intimately weaving in the personal and intimate details that manifest both Shadid's attentiveness to individual personalities and thorough understanding of his milieu. The unique identities of his subjects come alive in his descriptions of their superstitions, minor gestures, and customs. Lebanese culture comes to life in his description of the proper way to serve coffee: guests first, then family, and finally hosts. The beauty and dignity of Marjayoun and south Lebanon serve as the backdrop to plum thieves, gossip, conspiracies, and vendettas that reveal the quirks of a small town.

On multiple occasions, Shadid made me laugh out loud and at other times made my eyes well up with tears as he describes the hilarious and emotional moments of his contemporary experiences in Marjayoun and the difficult journey his ancestors made from the town to Oklahoma. His descriptions of the big personalities and the refined are precise and prescient. His relationships with Shibil, Assaad, Hikmat, Cecil, and Dr. Khairallah change Shadid's perspective and offer readers a glimpse into issues of identity and memory and that which is uniquely Marjayoun, "The accent of the place... words that belonged specifically to the town" (56). Shadid wrestles with the loneliness, pettiness, and at times depression of village life all of which is undergirded by a much more profound sense of history, of loss, and of existential anxiety about the future.

The tension of war and politics are constantly in the background while the tension, rivalries, and skilled labor of the warshe (the building site of Isber Samara's house which Shadid is re-inventing) play out in frustration and hilarity. Shadid introduces readers to the Arabic terminology used to describe the ancient objects and concepts he loves. His descriptions of cuisine, tiles, stone arches, fruit trees, the cherries of Shebaa, and flowers are enough to lift anyone's heart and send them on a vacation to south Lebanon in the spring to appreciate these treasures first hand.

Throughout, Shadid is reflective on his own behavior. He presents his own biases at face value, while allowing his subjects to speak for themselves. Like the author's personality, "House of Stone" is beautiful. Through his writing Shadid demonstrates that prior to his untimely death he had risen to the example of Dr. Khairallah, whom Shadid described as "the kind of man I wanted to be" (190).

As someone who lived through the wars and political events Shadid describes and knows a number of the characters who people his pages, I can attest that Shadid flawlessly and beautifully describes that which is uniquely Lebanese and Marjayoun. I highly recommend this book.
2 internautes sur 2 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Revealing Lebenon stone by stone 6 octobre 2012
Par Margaret S Martin - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Format Kindle Achat vérifié
Anthony Shedid. I did not know this man's work as a journalist when I read House of Stone. The situation in the middle east is so complex and depressing I usually just skim the headlines if that. But I have always been interested in Lebanon. NO particular reason just that it's the convergence of so many religions/cultures that seemed for awhile to be able to co-exist. Once it was a prospering region, even if the Ottamen Empire also inflicted brutalities. Then came the Brits, the French and the Americans, hacking up the entire landscape creating arbitrary borders... then well, it all fell to rat shit. But this wonderful personal complicated book took me on a journey of discovery of the region thru the history of a family and through one man's attempt to literally scrape away all the tacked on elements to his great grandfather's abandoned house and then reconstruct it as best he could to the way it was, once upon a time, long ago. He was on a leave for a year from covering 'the wars'. So the book is about the reconstruction of his own shattered psyche as much as it is about the house, family and community.
Just before I finished the book, I was so touched by the intimacy of the memoir and so admired the writing I decided to goggle him and read some of his work as a journalist. The first thing I found was his obituary. I had no idea he was 'THAT' Anthony Shedid. I was shocked and deeply saddened. I felt like I had lost a friend, a kindred spirit. But my five star review of this book would have been the same. I just would not feel such a profound sense of the world's loss of such a special person. May he rest in Peace. For he was truly a man of peace.
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