Beyond Belief: Islamic Excursions Among the Converted Peoples

Beyond Belief: Islamic Excursions Among the Converted Peoples

by V. S. Naipaul


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Beyond Belief: Islamic Excursions Among the Converted Peoples by V. S. Naipaul

"Brilliant. . . . A powerfully observed, stylistically elegant exploration." —The New York Times

A New York Times Notable Book of the Year

"The book's strength lies in Naipaul's extraordinary ability as a storyteller to draw striking portraits of a cross section of individuals."—The Boston Globe

Fourteen years after the publication of his landmark travel narrative Among the Believers, V. S. Naipaul returned to the four non-Arab Islamic countries he reported on so vividly at the time of Ayatollah Khomeini's triumph in Iran. Beyond Belief is the result of his five-month journey in 1995 through Indonesia, Iran, Pakistan, and Malaysia—lands where descendants of Muslim converts live at odds with indigenous traditions, and where dreams of Islamic purity clash with economic and political realities.

In extended conversations with a vast number of people—a rare survivor of the martyr brigades of the Iran-Iraq war, a young intellectual training as a Marxist guerilla in Baluchistan, an impoverished elderly couple in Teheran whose dusty Baccarat chandeliers preserve the memory of vanished wealth, and countless others—V. S. Naipaul deliberately effaces himself to let the voices of his subjects come through. Yet the result is a collection of stories that has the author's unmistakable stamp. With its incisive observation and brilliant cultural analysis, Beyond Belief is a startling and revelatory addition to the Naipaul canon.

"Highly accomplished. . . . Another display of Naipaul's remarkable talent." —The Independent (London)

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780375501180
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 05/26/1998
Pages: 408
Product dimensions: 6.71(w) x 9.58(h) x 1.35(d)

About the Author

V.S. Naipul lives in England.


Wiltshire, England

Date of Birth:

August 17, 1932

Place of Birth:

Chaguanas, Trinidad


Queen's Royal College, Trinidad, 1943-48; B.A., University College, Oxford, 1953

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