The Rage and the Prideby Oriana Fallaci
This edition is enriched by a dramatic preface in which Oriana Fallaci
With The Rage and the Pride, Oriana Fallaci breaks a silence that has lasted for ten years. She breaks it in the wake of the apocalypse that, on the morning of September 11th 2001, not far from her home in Manhattan, disintegrated the Twin Towers and incinerated thousands of people.
This edition is enriched by a dramatic preface in which Oriana Fallaci explains how the book was born and, considering the reasons why Islamic terrorism will not end with the defeat of the Taliban in Afghanistan, describes the global reality of the Jihad: the Holy War. A preface in which Oriana Fallaci takes us by surprise, talking also about herself: about her work, about her disdainful isolation, about her rigorous and hard choices.
Often slipping into personal memories, enlightening episodes of her life, she talks about the themes related to September 11th 2001: America, Europe, Italy, the West, the Islamic world, the Christian world, us. Above all, us. With her well-known courage she launches pitiless accusations and furious invectives. With her brutal sincerity she hurls the lucid ideas and the passions, the uncomfortable truths and the reflections, the ideas that almost all of us have but do not dare to say, or don't dare to say at loud voice.
What in her preface Fallaci calls "a little book" is on the contrary a great book. A precious book, a book that shakes our consciences. But it is also the portrait of a soul. Her soul. It will remain within us like a thorn into our minds and into our hearts.
As a writer, she is translated in twenty-one languages and thirty countries. Her fame is immense in Italy where The Rage and the Pride has sold one million copies over seven months and in France where it has been number one bestseller since its publication in May. For this American edition Oriana Fallaci has personally translated in English the Italian text and added several pages, also concerning the United States.
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No, I am not mystified by 'her denial that there is a moderate Islam, will not sit well with American readers', it sits very well with me! And I know exactly what a cicada sounds like and am familiar with its incessant self absorbed chirping.
I was raised in a spiritual tradition thousands of years older than islam in a land that suffered grievously from the murder, rape, pillage, forced conversion on pain of death, desecration, subjugation, and humiliation that its adherents visited upon my people in its name, justified in the knowledge that they were but carrying out the will of allah. They showed no mercy. They destroyed holy places and built their mosques on the ravished sites, preserving within a fragment or two of the original structure as a gesture of interfaith understanding to the infidel, just as they did with the Al Aqsa mosque on the ruins of the Second Temple in Jerusalem. / My first reaction on starting to read Oriana Fallaci's 'The Rage and the Pride' was a delight that curled my toes, that finally a writer of some substance got it and was not afraid to say it despite the boringly predictable death threats and attempts to murder that would follow by thugs who knew their god to be remarkably thin-skinned and not quite up to defending herself. I find it hard to argue with many of Fallaci's contentions, such as islam¿s being the only major faith with absolutely no record of critical self-examination. It certainly has a record of dishing it out in spades while remaining utterly incapable of taking it. What other religion prescribes that apostates be killed, and that infidels be forced to pay higher taxes even as they count as only half a person (if male, zero if female) in litigation? / Fallaci's work was a cathartic outpouring in the immediate aftermath of 9/11. True, there was dancing in the streets of Arab cities as well as expressions of sympathy, and many voiced outrage that the misguided perpetrators had in fact insulted their religion in an atrocious way. Yet neither the outrage nor the insult could have cut too deeply as not one teeny tiny fatwah came of it from anywhere in the islamic world calling for the head of bin Laden, not even a call for a slap on his wrist with a damp grape leaf. No, but the head of the Italian muslim community did call for the killing of this cancer-stricken septuagenarian woman, from his lair a scant mile from the Vatican, for the crime of speaking her mind. Yes, many did protest that muslims were unfairly tagged with a propensity for supporting terrorism. The people of Tibet have suffered horrendously from the cruel, illegal and immoral occupation by Chinese communists, but the Dalai Lama has yet to mobilize squadrons of Buddhist suicide bombers / After the first flush of empathetic anger and vicarious satisfaction, I began to think, began to see connections and lessons from history, began to distance myself from Fallaci's all-too-easy-to-agree-with screed, and began to see it instead as at best unthinkingly hypocritical. Her book is one unbroken polemic against islamic contamination of European Christendom. Her work is so excruciatingly chauvinistic that she is totally blind to how her beloved establishment came to be, how the world has seen all this happen in many ways before, and how it will doubtless see it happen again in many more ways. Colonialism and hegemony by force or stealth come in many flavors, religious or linguistic, ethnic or cultural, political or economic. But the planet's still here. This angry work serves only to further rouse those who already agree with Fallaci, enrage those who disagree, and leave a bad taste in everyone else¿s mouth. / Remember Spenser's Faerie Queene? This classic allegorical text of Middle English literature was a seminal work of anti-catholicism with the Anglican Redcrosse Knight embodying St. George battling Archimago the dragon, a composite of pope and satan. This was an early and inspired salvo in an unbroken tradition now shouldered by the abysmal likes of Bob Jones University. The same ideas held in the England of Lord George Gordon, who led the largest riots in memory to protest catholic emancipation, as they did in the America of a hundred yea
This book speaks eloquently (wild writing style included) to what many of us know to be the truth. It pinpoints supporting information that only someone as worldly and honest as the author could effectively do. Brava Oriana! Should be read by all.
There is nothing like a feisty Italian woman to express genuine outrage! This book embarrasses the rest of us who couldn't get down to the essence of the outrage and can't respond as well as she did. She is "only" a resident of NY and not an American, but she gives full voice to what we should be feeling and expressing. Good for her for doing it so well.
I liked the fact that an author who is foreign born had the courage to write a book like this immediately after 9-11, and in New York. The author transmuted her hatred and contempt of the bombers and of Islam in general in to a compact book that is both personal, and informative. This author has interviewed Arafat, been in Iran, etc., so she has a lot of experience. Her criticism of Muhammad Atta and Co. is dead on. Calling Islamic terror a "reverse crusade" is also dead on. And criticizing the West's "inflexible tolerance" is also dead on. Ms. Fallaci has been fined by the Politically Correct "Commissars" in France, a country in which, obviously, free speech is not allowed. That alone was reason for me to pick up this book - to support free speech. There are a couple of things, however, that I don't like about this book. One is the use of language. Ms. Fallaci has sentences in the book, such as, "I must stress you this", which really are like taking fingernails across a chalkboard. I am a translator, so I notice these things. She also uses allusions in English that don't make sense. What does it mean in English to call someone a "cicida" ? And she has a habit of ending sentences with, "etcetera, amen", that I found annoying, frankly. Perhaps that works in Italian. But I just wish that the text and language use in the book had been cleaner. Either write a book in Italian, or in English, not both at once, please. Her criticism of Somali immigrants in Europe comes off as a cheap shot. I have been in Florence, and was more upset by the arrogant Italian cops in their black uniforms harrassing immigrants, than I was by the Somalis. Also, there are fascists in Florence who beat the Somalis up. Ms. Fallaci did not mention that. I am actually against mass immigration, but this criticism is really from the "low drawer", when a more intelligent case could have been made. In many countries, for example, Somali immigrants are clean and hard-working. My father is a doctor, and has had many as patients, and attests that they are intelligent, respectful, and orderly. I would still suggest this book, despite all the pitfalls. Ms. Fallaci really has courage. Her anger got a way from her a little, and I wish an editor had been around during the writing of this book. But maybe she just wanted to write a very "raw" book. That is her right.
I stumbled upon this book on a recent trip to Italy. I have always admired Ms. Fallaci's courage and truthfulness. This book has surpassed anything she has written previously, and is a MUST read for anyone who wants to truly understand the post-9/11 world in which we live. Rage and Pride gives me, as an American, a deeper appreciation of our collective strengths (and shortcomings)as well as a brutally honest view of the role that the European (and most specifically, the Italian) government plays - or refuses to play - in this global conflict.
I remember Fallaci from my childhood, "A man", and her razor sharp interviews with movers and shakers of 1960's and 1970's politics. I was pleseantly surprised to notice a new book by her. She is probably the most read Italian writer along with or close to Umberto Ecco. The book itself is a easy to read. As usual, it is full of sharp observations, which sometimes feel like a slap in your face. One may not agree to all she has to say. And she may have gone overboard by lumping "all" immigrants together and labeling them as "would be terrorists". But, never the less, the book raises several important points. Number one: it raises the vitally important issue of a critical and intellectually merciless discussion on Islam, as a religion and as an ideology. It has not been done. In my opinion, as a staunchly secular and anti clerical middle eastern person, this discussion is four hundred years over due, and we (the humankind) are paying a illogically high price for it. Point number two is a wakeup call for Western leaders to take the fundamentalist threat seriously. Even in the US, I do not see it happening. Point number three is for muslims themselves. They are culturally isolationist and intolerant. There is no other name for it. They need to find out how they appear to "others". And they need to see that this picture generally does not generate a lot of sympathy. Fallaci has done a good job (did we expect anything else?) and the only faults that I could detect, were some episodes of over sentimentality and drama. But that has been her style. She has totally thrashed the "new" left and the PC/"progressive" crowd, and in this PC world, it is refereshing to read an intelligent answer to this crowd (what you usually read from the so-called conservatives is pretty dumb). Thank you Miss Fallaci, but remember that a good number of immigrants that you see on the street are here b/c they also don't like what you hate about the current situation of Middle East and North Africa.