A Symptom of the Problem
Posted by Steven Hayward
Got my latest University of Chicago Press book catalogue for political science in the mail yesterday. One offering is Muhsin Mahdis good book, Alfarabi and the Foundation of Islamic Political Philosophy.
In the small print, however, the catalogue informs us: "Not for sale in Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Maldives, Myanmar, Nepal, Bhutan."
9:26 AM / January 6, 2004
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Bernard Lewis & Harold Bloom have explained that Islamic countries have translated as many books in English throughout history as Spain does in a single year, noting that Spain doesnt translate too many because of cultural elitism. That shows me that Islam is a closed society with a long history of depotism going back to the Persian satraps but without a history of freedom of thought and critical inquiry. Perhaps this is "What Went Wrong" in Lewiss book on how the West superseded Islamic culture and why, in Victor Davis Hansons view, the Western Way of War is so devastating and why Muslims are forced into acts of terrorism against innocent civilians rather than facing down a Western juggernaut. The greatness of Western civilization is the ability to debate, dialogue, criticize, and dissent in republican, democratic societies. Democracy, anyone?