Heidi's Reviews > People Like Us: How arrogance is dividing Islam and the West

People Like Us by Waleed Aly
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's review
Apr 14, 2009

liked it
bookshelves: from-library-umrl, religion, religion-and-culture, politics-australian, by-nwp, 50books-poc-rnd1
Read in September, 2009

On the back of the edition I read, one of the review quotes, while praising the book as important, well-written, thoughtful, and pretty much required reading for Australians of conscience and thoughtfulness, noted that thinking it's a fabulous book doesn't mean agreeing with every word.

Which is pretty much my feeling. There is a hell of a lot to respect in this book: Aly writes very well and puts his arguments very clearly. From my perspective, the book suffers just a little from being a tad too scholarly (and it's exceedingly rare that I'd say anything of the sort) - particularly in Quranic scholarship, an area in which, contrary to the late lamented Reading Rainbow, you pretty much do have to take Aly's word for it - and I know I'm better educated on Islam than a lot of Australians of my vintage/background/etc. Where this was particularly a problem was in his chapter long critique of Irshad Manji's "The Trouble with Islam A Muslim's Call for Reform in Her Faith" - at the end of it, I was still on Manji's 'side', because he had failed to convince me, and Aly is a speaker and writer who generally manages to convince me in his newspaper columns and etc.

Aly, btw, is one of a group of authors of whom I feel more than a little jealous - Aly, as it turns out, was in my class at Law School. He's my contemporary and yet has written this incredibly important book - a book that, for all my issues with it (see eg my status updates), I would still recommend highly, particularly to Australian (or Aus-dwellers.)
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Reading Progress

05/27/2009 page 39
09/05/2009 page 232
83.75% "Was with him until the second last chapter. Now just frustrated."
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