Through the eyes of these families from Jaffa we understand how the founding of the state of Israel could be simultaneously a moment of jubilation for the Jews, and a disaster - the Naqba - for the 100,000 Arabs who fled Jaffa in 1948, most of them never to return. Jaffa was for centuries the main port of the eastern Mediterranean, home to Muslims, Christians and Jews, while the produce of its orange groves was famed throughout the world. From 1920 the British administered the city under the Mandate and it is in 1920 that Adam LeBor's ambitious and engaging new book begins to tell the history of Israel through the prism of Jaffa. Its inhabitants include the Jewish coffee and spice merchant, the Arab baker who made bread for the whole community, the Palestinian exile who tried to bring modern business methods to the Arafat era and the Jewish schoolgirl who befriended an Arab drug dealer. In this ground-breaking book Adam LeBor goes beyond the media stereotypes to recount a moving human story of a country born of conflict.
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Adam LeBor was born in London and read Arabic, International History and Politics at Leeds University, graduating in 1983, and also studied Arabic at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. He worked for several national British newspapers before becoming a foreign correspondent in 1991. Since then he has travelled extensively in eastern and central Europe and covered the Yugoslav wars for the Independent and The Times. Currently Central Europe Correspondent for The Times he also contributes to the Economist, Literary Review, The Nation, the Jewish Chronicle, Conde Nast Traveller and the Budapest Sun newspaper. His books have been published in nine languages.From Publishers Weekly:
Starred Review. As any student of the Middle East can attest, there's almost no way to approach the Israeli-Palestinian conflict with objectivity; virtually every word about it comes weighted with ideology or political mission. But English journalist LeBor (the Times) has achieved the near-impossible. While ostensibly telling the story of one town, he sketches the tale of Israel's birth and concomitant Palestinian nakba (catastrophe), with the knotted lives of Jaffa's Arab and Jewish residents serving as a humanizing lens. Though not a rigorous academic study, this history encompasses both the familiar (nonstop wars) and the lesser-known (Syria's 1949 peace overtures). Dotted with delightful period details, it gives individual opinion free rein, reporting contradictions without judgment. The history of both peoples is marked by trauma and courage, and neither side has really managed to listen to the other—because, LeBor notes, "any recognition of each other's losses is a kind of surrender in the endless battle for memory as well as territory." He quietly condemns the worst excesses of both sides—Israeli occupation, Palestinian corruption, Israeli racism, Palestinian suicide terrorism—and comes down on the side of compromise. Some readers will noisily object, but those looking for a well-rounded and truly human insight into the conflict will enjoy this account. (May)
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Buchbeschreibung Bloomsbury Publishing, 2007. 351 pages Book in very good condition. 9780747586029 Sprache: Englisch Gewicht in Gramm: 440. Artikel-Nr. 457515