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In the Name of God بسم الله

What Are You Reading Currently? [OFFICIAL THREAD]

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2 minutes ago, Marbles said:

Two classics. 

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Charles Dickens - Great Expectations

 

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The Book of Disquiet - Fernando Pessoa

Translated from the Portuguese.

That 'like' was for Charles Dickens - my father used to encourage me to read his work. Good choice.

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I bought this the other day - The Broken Bead: Reflections on the Life of Hazrat Fatima (as) by Ayatollah Wahid Khorasani. It's a translation of some of his lectures on Bibi Fatima (as).

^ Every person old enough to understand it should read 1984.

(salam) I just finished reading Al-Muhaddithat: The Women Scholars in Islam 2 days ago.     This book is an adaptation of the Muqaddimah or Preface to Mohammad Akram’s 40-volume biographical diction

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10 minutes ago, apofomysback said:

That 'like' was for Charles Dickens - my father used to encourage me to read his work. Good choice.

Yeah, you can never go wrong with Dickens. He is a great teacher of language and a supreme artist. 

But I'm finding it hard to tear away from Pessoa's book. He's such a brilliant writer.

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3 minutes ago, Marbles said:

Yeah, you can never go wrong with Dickens. He is a great teacher of language and a supreme artist. 

But I'm funding it hard to tear away from Pessoa's book. He's such a brilliant writer.

I'd look it up if you highly recommend it

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9 minutes ago, apofomysback said:

I'd look it up if you highly recommend it

I do. Go for Richard Zenith's translation. 

Pessoa will challenge your idea of a conventional novel with a series of vignettes about the enigma of being and belonging, about how it is to live in a mass of contradictions we call life.

 

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Currently reading (and will be attempting to read over the break):

 

Arms and Influence - Thomas C. Schelling

Man, the State, and War - Kenneth Waltz. 

Great Games, Local Rules: The Great New Power Contest in Central Asia - Alexander Cooley

The New Old World - Perry Anderson

Studies in Early Hadith LiteratureMustafa Azami

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:salam:

I have just read the Duchess of Malfi, a play by John Webster because I had to do a presentation on it (I'm a literature student at university). A really powerful and disturbing piece of writing.

So excited because I've just ordered some Islamic books from Amazon. Alhamdulilah :D I can't wait to read the following:

The Ten Granted Paradise by Dr Sayed Ammar Nakshawani

Ramadan Sermons by Dr Sayed Ammar Nakshawani

Hurr ibn Adi: Victim of Terror by Dr Sayed Ammar Nakshawani

An Introduction to Shi'a Islam by M Momen

 

Amy :) 

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Human Zoo: For Centuries, Indigenous Peoples Were Displayed as Novelties by Sara Shahriari

http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2011/08/30/human-zoo-centuries-indigenous-peoples-were-displayed-novelties-48239

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4/5 (I took a star off because the recipes were either expensive or didn't taste that good).

This book has given me so much perspective on what the food we consume does to our body. I recently turned vegan (for physical performance and disease prevention) and I've seen a lot of positive results in my physique and performance. 

Brendan explains how stress is mostly caused from the food we eat and less to do with environmental and work factors. He talks about how some of the food we eat for extra energy increases our stress levels after its effects have left the body/subsided. It also contains information on why meat shouldn't be eaten everyday (I have also read a hadith that is against eating meat for 40 consequent days) and why. There are tons of other information inside the book; I really recommend it. It'll be a good read if nothing else.

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On December 9, 2015 at 7:42 PM, Chaotic Muslem said:

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I picked this up yesterday, started reading the first pages and it sounds cool. Do you reckn i'll finish it?

Sent to the trash of civilisation, it and all the other things written by that author.

 

 

“Our interest's on the dangerous edge of things. The honest thief, the tender murderer, the superstitious atheist.”― Robert Browning . Learned from "Snow" by Orhan Pamuk...I hope i'll get a better companion in my train trips this time

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7 hours ago, Chaotic Muslem said:

I think I've read 3 pages only... I can't judge. But I hope it will be better companion than the previous one

I couldn't tear my eyes away. It was that good.

I think you'll enjoy it as long as you understand that Pamuk's purpose is to satirize and caricature the Kemalist and Islamist camps to bring out the perennial conflict in the Turkish context.

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I just ordered a used copy of this:

http://www.amazon.com/The-Constant-Fire-Science-Religion/dp/0520265866

I recently read another book by Dr. Frank, and found it enjoyable and informative. This one seems to focus more on the religious implications of science, whereas the other that I read focused on the history and possible future of cosmology. I have high expectations, but it's not scheduled to arrive for a few weeks.

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I cannot recommend this book enough! It has literally everything you need to know about making the most of Rajab, Shaban and Ramadan with Arabic and English translations. You can order it from here :) Its a huuuggge book! http://www.hujjatbookshop.co.uk/the-rites-of-rajab-shaban-ramadan.html?filter_name=ramadan&filter_description=true&filter_sub_category=true1.png.4b21a1696a6a3db5a6b456c45c0689de.p

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The Red-Haired Woman by Orhan Pamuk

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Orhan Pamuk’s tenth novel, The Red-Haired Woman is the story of a well-digger and his apprentice looking for water on barren land. It is also a novel of ideas in the tradition of the French conte philosophique. 

In mid-1980s Istanbul, Master Mahmut and his apprentice use ancient methods to dig new wells; this is the tale of their back-breaking struggle, but it is also an exploration—through stories and images—of ideas about fathers and sons, authoritarianism and individuality, state and freedom, reading and seeing. This short, compelling novel is at once a realist text investigating a murder which took place thirty years ago near Istanbul, and a fictional inquiry into the literary foundations of civilizations, comparing two fundamental myths of the West and the East respectively: Sophocles’s Oedipus Rex (a story of patricide) and Ferdowsi’s tale of Rostam and Sohrab (a story of filicide). 

Throughout runs the demonic voice of the eponymous red-haired woman.

http://www.orhanpamuk.net/book.aspx?id=111&lng=eng

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On 4/1/2016 at 0:57 PM, Bayqush said:

The Red-Haired Woman by Orhan Pamuk

r1y9fp.jpg

Orhan Pamuk’s tenth novel, The Red-Haired Woman is the story of a well-digger and his apprentice looking for water on barren land. It is also a novel of ideas in the tradition of the French conte philosophique. 

In mid-1980s Istanbul, Master Mahmut and his apprentice use ancient methods to dig new wells; this is the tale of their back-breaking struggle, but it is also an exploration—through stories and images—of ideas about fathers and sons, authoritarianism and individuality, state and freedom, reading and seeing. This short, compelling novel is at once a realist text investigating a murder which took place thirty years ago near Istanbul, and a fictional inquiry into the literary foundations of civilizations, comparing two fundamental myths of the West and the East respectively: Sophocles’s Oedipus Rex (a story of patricide) and Ferdowsi’s tale of Rostam and Sohrab (a story of filicide). 

Throughout runs the demonic voice of the eponymous red-haired woman.

http://www.orhanpamuk.net/book.aspx?id=111&lng=eng

The blurb is very enticing. Would love to read it. I don't think it's been translated into English is it?

The murder mystery reminds me of My Name is Red wherein the subject of inquiry is the competing conceptions of art between the East and West. And what a marvelous book it is! Currently I'm reading The Strangeness in My Mind, my sixth Pamuk novel, and the least intereting so far. The good old improvisatory Pamuk has taken a backseat to tell a generational story Karataş family in pretty average prose. Or is it the translation? I don't know.

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Fixed a novel's title
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I am in page number 30 in Orhan's Snow novel. Yes i am extremely slow but now that i got my nerdy glasses, i hope i can pick up quicker. It just stopped me for a while because i've heard of similar cluster of young women burning themselves alive to escape the pain of their marriages. I wonder if someone can tackle this truth here in a novel like Orhan rather than writing silly stories about romance fake love and being sinfully proud.

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^ Don't tell me you fell in love with Blue? (has he even made appearance 30 pages in? I don't remember)

As for me, I habitually fell in love with Pamuk's lead female characters. Ipek in Snow, Shekure in My Name is Red, and Füsun in The Museum of Innocence, appropriately named because she's magic! But Rüya from The Black Book was least attractive -_-

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In 1873, Naseer-ud-Din Shah Qajar, the King of Persia, published an account of his travels in Europe. During his stay in London he wrote:
 

Today before seeing the ministers and others, the English fire brigade came and in the garden at the back of our palace went through their exercise. They planted ladders with the supposition that the upper floor was on fire, they mounted these ladders with perfect celerity and agility and brought down people who were burnt, half-burnt or unharmed, some taken up on their shoulders and others let down by ropes made fast round their waists. They have invented a beautiful means of saving men. But the wonder is in this: that on one hand they take such trouble and originate such appliances for the salvation of man from death, where on the other hand, in the armories arsenals and workshops of Woolwich and of Krupp in Germany they contrive fresh engines such as cannons, muskets, projectiles and similar things for the quicker and more multitudinous slaughter of mankind.

 

Since innumerable Western accounts of the "exotic East" continue to live on in contemporary memory, it is eminently important to resurrect the narratives of the conquered if "decolonisation of the mind" is to be achieved. Here is a survey of literature (travelogues, correspondence, fiction) produced by writers of Muslim background attempting to understand the Imperial behemoth by visiting it at its home. Since British were nowhere as entrenched as in the Indian subcontinent, most of the older accounts have come from Indian writers such as:

- The Wonders of Vilayet: Being the Memoir, Originally in Persian, of a Visit to France and Britain in 1765 by Mirza Sheikh I'tesamuddin.
- Dean Mahomed's travels in Ireland and England (1759 1851), known as the first Indian to write in English.
- Atiya's Journeys: A Muslim Woman from Colonial Bombay to Edwardian Britain, one of the first Muslim women to go to Britain in pursuit of modern education, in 1921.

More approximate accounts include Sajjad Zaheer (Indo-Pak), Yahya Haqqi (Egypt), Attia Hosain(India), Qurratulain Hyder (India), Tayeb Salih (Sudan), Ahdaf Soueif (Egypt), Abdulrazak Gurnah(Tanzania), Abdullah Hussein (Pakistan) and many other writers, old and new.

I think eventually the credit goes to Edward W. Said who started the whole process of the "natives talking back to the Empire."

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Currently reading

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Leg Over Leg: Volume One

by Ahmad Faris al-Shidyaq

Translated from the Arabic by Humphrey Davis.

From the blurb:

"Leg over Leg recounts the life, from birth to middle age, of 'the Fariyaq, ' alter ego of Ahmad Faris al-Shidyaq, a pivotal figure in the intellectual and literary history of the modern Arab world. The always edifying and often hilarious adventures of the Fariyaq, as he moves from his native Lebanon to Egypt, Malta, Tunis, England and France, provide the author with grist for wide-ranging discussions of the intellectual and social issues of his time, including the ignorance and corruption of the Lebanese religious and secular establishments, freedom of conscience, women's rights, sexual relationships between men and women, the manners and customs of Europeans and Middle Easterners, and the differences between contemporary European and Arabic literatures. Al-Shidyaq also celebrates the genius and beauty of the classical Arabic language. 

Akin to Sterne and Rabelais in his satirical outlook and technical inventiveness, al-Shidyaq produced in Leg Over Leg a work that is unique and unclassifiable. It was initially widely condemned for its attacks on authority, its religious skepticism, and its "obscenity," and later editions were often abridged. This is the first English translation of the work and reproduces the original Arabic text, published under the author's supervision in 1855."

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So many good books mentioned here.

I'm a long time fan of Paul Ekman, and I'm reading his book Telling Lies: Clues to Deceit in the Marketplace, Politics, and Marriage.

As the leading expert on micro expressions and nonverbal clues, he takes a neutral stance in preemptively warning against the information often given by "experts" (in the Defense Department, policemen, professional polygraphers, customs officials, and others in the media), and highlights the fact that whilst we may be able to detect certain emotions and expressions, ultimately we cannot make a concrete judgement about why the emotions/expressions were displayed, and thus other techniques and questioning becomes important.

It's not one of those "he blinked so he's lying" or "she twitched her nose so she's hiding something" books. He warns against that sort of approach (and there is a lot of it in mainstream media).

It's not in the book, or maybe it is but I haven't come across it yet, but it's interesting that in his research of universal human emotions and expressions he travelled to places where people had not seen television or any images on screens or paper, so he was trying to determine what was natural to human beings without the influence of external perceptions on how to react or how to move ones face. He also did similar studies on blind people. There are universal natural expressions. Body language differs, that is socially culturally acquired.

Anyhoo, it's a good read for anyone interested in the idea of what constitutes lying, how to become more familiar with its signs, and it's just a good read for anyone interested in psychology.

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2 hours ago, Determined said:

So many good books mentioned here.

I'm a long time fan of Paul Ekman, and I'm reading his book Telling Lies: Clues to Deceit in the Marketplace, Politics, and Marriage.

As the leading expert on micro expressions and nonverbal clues, he takes a neutral stance in preemptively warning against the information often given by "experts" (in the Defense Department, policemen, professional polygraphers, customs officials, and others in the media), and highlights the fact that whilst we may be able to detect certain emotions and expressions, ultimately we cannot make a concrete judgement about why the emotions/expressions were displayed, and thus other techniques and questioning becomes important.

It's not one of those "he blinked so he's lying" or "she twitched her nose so she's hiding something" books. He warns against that sort of approach (and there is a lot of it in mainstream media).

It's not in the book, or maybe it is but I haven't come across it yet, but it's interesting that in his research of universal human emotions and expressions he travelled to places where people had not seen television or any images on screens or paper, so he was trying to determine what was natural to human beings without the influence of external perceptions on how to react or how to move ones face. He also did similar studies on blind people. There are universal natural expressions. Body language differs, that is socially culturally acquired.

Anyhoo, it's a good read for anyone interested in the idea of what constitutes lying, how to become more familiar with its signs, and it's just a good read for anyone interested in psychology.

Interesting to point out that Eckman published only a superficial part of his work, but there is way much more to it.

It is mostly practice and social study. A field I find very important to develop for social leaders and psychologists.

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27 minutes ago, Bakir said:

Interesting to point out that Eckman published only a superficial part of his work, but there is way much more to it.

It is mostly practice and social study. A field I find very important to develop for social leaders and psychologists.

Do you think that is because of the different agencies that have been using his work?
Perhaps Ekman is only able to share a certain amount, not by choice. He did receive his funding from APRA (now DARPA).
Yeah it is a great field.

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28 minutes ago, Determined said:

Do you think that is because of the different agencies that have been using his work?
Perhaps Ekman is only able to share a certain amount, not by choice. He did receive his funding from APRA (now DARPA).
Yeah it is a great field.

Absolutely, I have no doubt about that and others who studied this topic deeply argue that this is the main reason he didn't publish all his work.

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Currently reading from the long-and-shortlists of Man Booker International Prize 2016. It's been ages I read fresh contemporary lit fic in translation. So far so good.

On fourth book from the longlist, none of which made on to the shortlist.

Longlist-Man-Booker-2016-1024x378.jpg

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How to Catch a Russian Spy, by Naveed Jamali with Ellis Henican.

Jamali's parents are French and Indo-Paki originating from Dehli and Hyderabad. They ran a book research service. They also had diplomatic clients from the UN. After the protagonist finished school and worked some in the shop, he became acquainted with and then under FBI supervision entangled a Russian diplomat in the Russian's own espionage caper.

What is most humorous is how Jamali used movies as his instructions for field operations.

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