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  • Among the Believers: An Islamic Journey
    by Vidiadhar Surajprasad Naipaul
    Book Description: Naipaul's controversial account of his travels through the Islamic world was hailed by The New Republic as "the most notable work on contemporary Islam to have appeared in a very long time." 
    Paperback: 448 pages ; Dimensions (in inches): 1.04 x 8.03 x 5.22 
    Publisher: Vintage; Reissue edition (July 12, 1982) 
    ISBN: 0394711955

    Allah O Akbar : A Journey Through Militant Islam
    by Abbas, Magnum (Photographer)
    Allah O Akbar begins the call to prayer that resonates from minarets in towns and villages from Sinkiang to Morocco, from Paris to Timbuktu. No matter where in the world you are, the message is the same: "God is Great." It is also the war cry of Islamic militants throughout the lands of the faithful.

    Abbas has travelled throughout the Islamic world for seven years to take the photographs for this extraordinary book. Driven by a desire to understand and expose the internal tensions within Muslim societies, he highlights the conflict between a rising political movement looking for inspiration in a mythical past and a desire for modernization. The quality of immediacy in the work and the subtlety of its composition provide a constant visual stimulus; the sequence of dramatic and often disturbing images confirm Abbas's reputation as one of the few photographers who can raise photojournalism to an art form.

    The political influence Islam exerts on the world makes this book a work of enormous importance. Many Islamic societies seem shrouded in religious and cultural mystery, but through his words and images, Abbas provides a penetrating insight into the secrets of these communities and their world. Photographed and written as a personal account, the book speaks with all the urgency of a diary, recording a journey in the lands of Allah.

    After years of dedicated work, in 29 countries, spanning four continents, Abbas has drawn a telling portrait, coloured by the turmoil and the tradition, the militancy and the moderation to be found in Islam. The Publisher.
    Publisher: Phaidon Press Inc.;  

    Beyond Belief: Islamic Excursions Among the Converted Peoples
    by V. S. Naipaul

    The Culture of Islam: Changing Aspects of Contemporary Muslim Life
    by Lawrence Rosen

    The Essential Rumi - reissue : New Expanded Edition
    by Coleman Barks
    No translator could do greater justice to the gorgeous simplicity of Rumi's poetry than Coleman Barks has done here. These exquisite renderings of the 13th-century Persian mystic's words into American free verse capture all the "inner searching, the delicacy, and simple groundedness" that characterize Rumi's poetry while remaining faithful to the images, tone, and spiritual message of the originals. Barks's introductions to each of the 27 sections (described as "playful palimpsests spread over Rumi's imagination," and "meant to confuse scholars who would divide Rumi's poetry into the accepted categories") are themselves wonderful achievements of a poetic imagination; searching explanations of unfamiliar concepts and funny stories provide colorful background and frame the selections as no dry historical exegesis could.

    While Barks's stamp on this collection is clear, it in no way interferes with the poems themselves; Rumi's voice leaps off these pages with an ecstatic energy that leaves readers breathless. There are poems of love, rage, sadness, pleading, and longing; passionate outbursts about the torture of longing for his beloved and the sweet pleasure that comes from their union; amusing stories of sexual exploits or human weakness; and quiet truths about the beauty and variety of human emotion. More than anything, Rumi makes plain the unbridled joy that comes from living life fully, urging us always to put aside our fears and take the risk to do so. As he says: "The way of love is not / a subtle argument. / The door there is devastation. / Birds make great sky-circles / of their freedom. / How do they learn it? / They fall, and falling, / they're given wings." --Uma Kukathas -
    Paperback from Harper SanFrancisco

    A History of God: The 4,000-Year Quest of Judaism, Christianity and Islam
    by Karen Armstrong

    The Holy Qur'an: Text, Translation & Commentary
    by Abdullah Yusuf Ali (Editor)

    Islam: A Short History
    by Karen Armstrong

    The Koran (Penguin Classics)
    by N. J. Dawood (Translator)

    The Meaning of the Holy Qur'an
    by Abdullah Yusuf Ali

    Taliban: Militant Islam, Oil and Fundamentalism in Central Asia
    by Ahmed Rashid
    Listed under Taliban

    Nine Parts of Desire : The Hidden World of Islamic Women
    by Geraldine Brooks
    Anchor Books; ISBN: 0385475772

    Muhammad : A Biography of the Prophet
    by Karen Armstrong
    (Paperback - October 1993)

    Muhammad Ali: The Birth of a Legend, Miami, 1961-1964
    by Flip Schulke, et al
    Listed under Muhammad Ali

    The Muslim Discovery of Europe
    by Bernard Lewis 

    Understanding Islam : An Introduction to the Muslim World
    by Thomas W. Lippman 

    Why I Am Not a Muslim
    by Ibn Warraq

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