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Het Midden Oosten: 2000 jaar culturele en politieke geschiedenis

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3.72  ·  Rating Details ·  1,421 Ratings  ·  107 Reviews
To gain a better understanding of contemporary Middle Eastern culture and society, which is steeped in tradition, one should look closely at its history. Bernard Lewis, Professor of Near Eastern studies at Princeton University, considered one of the world's foremost authorities on the Middle East, spans 2000 years of this region's history, searching in the past for answers ...more
Paperback, 432 pages
Published 2008 by Forum (first published 1995)
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Amin Mosayyebzadeh
اگه دنبال کتابی برای آشنایی با خاورمیانه هستید، این کتاب رو برای شروع پیشنهاد می دم.
کتاب از قبل از اسلام شروع می شود و تا سال 1995 ( سال انتشار کتاب) ادامه پیدا می کند. هر چند به بررسی مختصر تاریخ ایران هم می پردازد، اما باید توجه داشت که منظور از خاورمیانه جهان عرب است. به همین دلیل ، از قرون وسطی به بعد بیشتر به تاریخ امپراطوری عثمانی و برخورد آن با جهان غرب می پردازد. در سال های معاصر نیز بیشتر به بررسی کشورهای حاصل از تجزیه این امپراطوری می پردازد.
برای من کتاب مفیدی بود برای آشنایی با تاریخ
...more
Tim Green
Mar 25, 2015 Tim Green rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
An interesting overview of the history of the Middle East.

Trying to condense two millennia of history of an entire region into one book is rather ambitious and at times one does get confused with the details and direction. This is particularly true in the earlier part of the book, covering the earlier history, where of course records are rare. But whilst I don't come away from this book thinking I understand the history well, I do now have a rough idea of how the history has developed.

Where the
...more
Mark Becher
Aug 27, 2007 Mark Becher rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I thought the book was a useful overview of Middle Eastern history from the Roman Empire through the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Obviously that is a lot of ground to cover in less than four hundred pages, so the level of detail is not terribly great. Lewis is aiming instead for a general understanding of the major trends in the region's development. Since the entire subject was new to me at the time of reading this book I had to resign myself to letting many of the dates and names slide past m ...more
Cynthia
Sep 04, 2010 Cynthia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a fantastic book! A clear, unbiased presentation of Middle East history over the last 2000 years - and told in such a compelling way that it was more than just facts and figures but a dramatic and engaging story. Lewis has a definite knack for story telling, turns of phrase, and well placed vignettes. Actually, I think there are at least three or four blockbuster movies we could make from this book!
Aaron
Jun 18, 2009 Aaron rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good general history of the Middle East with a strong focus on Islamic (think Turkish, Lewis's main area of study)history from 622 AD to the first gulf war. The most important sections cover culture, local politics and the lower classes, subjects rarely covered in most surveys, which often seem to only bounce from war to war.
Thomas
Aug 01, 2009 Thomas rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Anyone who wants to understand the Middle East should start with Bernard Lewis.
Andrew Rosner
This is a somewhat condensed examination of the last two thousand years of history in the Middle East. If you’re looking for detailed biographies of every major historical figure during that time, or elaborate accounts of military conquest, this probably isn’t the volume for you. On the other hand, if you’re curious about the broader cultural, technological and linguistic currents that have shaped the region, you’ve found a home. At the book’s centre is Islam, and the book occasionally feels lik ...more
Simone
Dec 17, 2013 Simone rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is an interesting overview of Middle Eastern history by respected Middle East scholar Lewis. Although, as some other reviewers here have noted, his style is not highly entertaining, if you are interested in learning something and enjoy challenging your mind, rather than being passively entertained by pop culture versions of history, it's worth the effort. Lewis takes the panoramic view of the social, cultural, religious, and political history of the region, which I found illuminating ofcurr ...more
Dennis
Aug 16, 2014 Dennis rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Positives: Lewis does an excellent job in the middle section of the book analyzing aspects of Middle East culture and government, such as the state and the arts. His anecdotes are longer in these sections, and he is better at focusing on subjects that he finds important. His modern history section is tightly written as well and fairly entertaining.

Negatives: First, Lewis has a pro-colonial and pro-Western bias that shines strongly in the modern history section. Lewis certainly believes that West
...more
Matt
Oct 05, 2008 Matt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
Lewis is a good historian and his was an enjoyable enough read (more so than Karen Armstrong's book on the same subject). Creates a good understanding of some of the great historical ironies (e.g. how an ascendent Islamic culture preserved much of the history and literature that were foundational for liberal western culture, how Islamic culture went into a great period of decline in part because they didn't know of any good sources of energy to fuel their economic growth). A good companion book ...more
Charlie
Feb 28, 2008 Charlie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
Wow.

I saw this book in the bargain bin and figured I could not go wrong. My historical knowledge, well my knowledge period, of the middle-east was quite minimal.

There is a lot of information in this tome, more than a person could ever hope to retain. That said, I think it is more than possible for most people to slog through and gain great insight into the politics, the religion of this rich and fascinating part of the world.

This read is a major endeavor so be prepared, but if you are truly look
...more
Yofish
May 02, 2010 Yofish rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-on-tape
A very comprehensive history, more or less from Mohammed to the present. Way too much to listen to 5 minutes at a time in the car. Just too much information to process and remember. Was it France or Britain in Egypt in the 19th century? Who were Pashas and who were Sultans? Tammarlane did what, again? What's the difference between Nationalism and patriotism?
Alex Hui
Apr 20, 2014 Alex Hui rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
This book provides a very detailed account of how Islam influence the Middle East from sixth century and how the West shape the recent picture of Middle East. Readers may find the book focus much on Islam and a bit little of what happened regionally during Middle Age. It's also a good book on mental development of Middle East people.
Wanda
Feb 13, 2016 Wanda marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
13 FEB 2015 - a work lunchroom find. New boxes of books appeared and this was inside one of them. Lucky me!
Joseph Stieb
Read this because Lewis was so important in shaping views of the grand sweep of West-Islam relations in the 1980's, 90's, and 2000's. I thought getting it straight from the horse's mouth would be better than relying on most academics' very negative opinions of this guys. Here's the thing: if I didn't know his politics, I probably wouldn't have suspected that this guy was a major ally of the neoconservatives and an alleged Orientalist. The book is less thesis driven and more coverage oriented tha ...more
Arjun Mishra
Jul 01, 2011 Arjun Mishra rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
The stated task of this book is to explore through two thousand years of the vast history of the Middle East in fewer than four hundred pages. It is difficult to condense a region that has thrived and declined under numerous empires, given birth to three major world religions, served as a bridge in between Europe and Asia, and has been an enormous foreign policy question for the West, but Bernard Lewis managed to do so successfully. Regardless, there are still some problems with the book.

I was d
...more
Bob
Feb 09, 2012 Bob rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history
This book is a useful survey of the history and cultural institutions of the Middle East. Lewis goes back before the rise of Islam to look at the civilizations and religious systems that antedated Islam including Rome, Greece, Persia and Egypt and Judaism and Zoroastrianism, as well as nascent Christianity. He delineates the rise of Islam and the clashes both with the west and invading peoples from the Steppes and Mongolia. He also details the rise, greatness, and protracted decline of the Ottom ...more
Omar Taufik
This was a wonderfully written book by the great author and historian Bernard Lewis.
Having in mind the period covered starting from the ancient middle East ending by the year 1994, I would consider this book very comprehensive.
As the author mentioned in the beginning of the book, there was a reasonable highlight on the ancient middle East before Christianity and Islam, and a very detailed and interesting emphasis and analysis of the social cultural aspects of the region's history.
The bulk of th
...more
Justin Evans
Too much for my taste on the twentieth century, and not enough on the pre-Ottoman world, but that can be forgiven. The slightly oily feeling I got reading the last few chapters, however, cannot: Lewis seems to know an awful lot about the middle east, but, as with many biographers, all that knowledge seems to have made him less, rather than more, keen. The take-away of the last half of the book seems to be "if only they'd act more like Americans!" One day, we can wistfully hope, Arabs, Turks and ...more
Bill Sleeman
Sep 21, 2013 Bill Sleeman rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition

Following the visit of some Muslim speakers at my church I took another try at The Middle East by Bernard Lewis, a book I gave up on a few months back. While I was almost able to complete it this time I must admit that again I found myself increasingly stymied by Lewis’ style. I really wanted to enjoy this book and not just get through it but neither happened – didn’t enjoy it, did not finish it. To be fair the content is brilliant but his writing is so slow and so very academic. It seemed tha

...more
Dale
Oct 23, 2012 Dale rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
2000 years in 387 pages - A great effort but somewhat unsatisfying.

Don't get me wrong - I am came to this book as a true fan of Bernard Lewis. His book Crisis of Islam was one of the more thought-provoking books I read last year. However, this book is quite different than 'Crisis'. It's scope is massive, and it is a history book rather than a work of examination and informed conjecture.

Lewis addresses these shortcomings in his introduction and admits that it will be a difficult undertaking to
...more
Karim
Apr 25, 2015 Karim rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A great and comprehensive introduction to Middle Eastern history. It is obvious the Bernard Lewis is a great historian and explains history, as well as culture, cleanly and accurately.

To be fair, his opinions tend to leak into his historical narrations. Opinions and viewpoints seen in his Atlantic article "The Roots of Muslim Rage" color his explanations for historical phenomenon. This may frustrate those that disagree with him. But it does not distract the reader from the history at hand and se
...more
Carissa
Feb 09, 2013 Carissa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a good overview of the history of the Middle East. Lewis begins with the Christian period, but most of the book covers the history of the Middle East after the creation of Islam. The book was published in 1995. Reading it 11 years after 9/11, with all that has happened, gives the hopefulness of the final chapters a particular bitterness. I do recommend it. It's very accessible and thought-provoking.
Ryan Atwood
At first, I thought this might be a really exciting book about how events in the last 2,000 years have culminated into the situations we hear about in the news today. However, the focus was on things that were a lot more relevant if you lived 1,000 years ago. Interesting to a degree, but I could only take so much of "Abu Muhammed so and so lived until the time of the blah blah tribe, which was just before the sassanid caliphate". So, I actually stopped reading it.
رناتا
Sep 28, 2009 رناتا rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Este libro es una buena síntesis de la historia de Oriente Próximo escrita por uno de los autores punteros en lo que se refiere a historia del mundo islámico, en especial del mundo otomano.

Aunque a veces peca de pesado, y a veces el autor parece que se va de la línea que estaba siguiendo, no deja de ser una magnífico libro muy bien escrito.

Se lo recomiendo a todo aquel que quiera iniciarse en la tan complicada historia de Oriente Próximo y entenderla mejor.
Carlos Alonso-Niemeyer
After traveling to the Middle East and interacting with many wonderful people who live in a Muslim culture, I became fascinated with everything "Arab". Lewis is very good in his descriptions and evaluations of the culture through the eyes of an Englishman.
This book is not for the beginner reader. However, after you are finished, you understand completely who our brothers and sisters in the other side of the world.
As one of my must cherished friends likes to say "God is great"...
Dan
Don't read any textbook on this subject before you read this book. A boring subject you say? Not by Bernard Lewis. Not exactly the same as reading a good novel, but not far behind. From Rome to the Ottomans, to the present. Religion. Culture, Poltics, Economics, and of course, Conflict. Lots of conglict. If you want to read history without being bored and discouraged, this is a great book!
Anca
Nov 13, 2014 Anca rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015
O altă carte de istorie, dar de altă factură. Pe asta am început-o în 2014 şi am citit-o de-a lungul mai multor luni. Dacă nu ştiţi mare lucru despre istoria Orientului Mijlociu (aşa, ca mine) vă puteți pune la punct cu evenimentele principale, în special începutul islamului, citind această carte.

http://www.oviatabuna.ro/2015/02/alte...
Ben Daghir
Fantastic book that provides a deep understanding of the history within the Middle East. Some of the information was way above my head, but this book has helped me improve my general understanding of the world. The Middle East, more than most people realize, has affected the world for thousands of years.
Pablo Rossello
Oct 22, 2007 Pablo Rossello rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: recently-read
Very good introduction to the history and culture of the area. Thorough without being boring, well documented, written in a simple prose -excellent book for Middle East beginners like me. Didn't make me an expert, but I can now know my way across the different dynasties, from the Ummayyads to the Abbasids up until the Ottoman Empire.
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Bernard Lewis is the Cleveland E. Dodge Professor of Near Eastern Studies Emeritus at Princeton University and the author of many critially acclaimed and bestselling books, including two number one New York Times bestsellers: What Went Wrong? and Crisis of Islam. The Middle East: A Brief History of the Last 2,000 Years was a National Book Critics Circle Award finalist. Internationally recognized a ...more
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“wholly given up to villainy and debauchery, and ride the steed of perfidy and presumption, and dive into the sea of error and impiety, and are united under the banner of Satan.” 0 likes
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