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Nomad: A Personal Journey Through the Clash of Civilizations Paperback – 13 May 2010


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Product details

  • Paperback: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Ltd (13 May 2010)
  • Language: Unknown
  • ISBN-10: 1847376649
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847376640
  • Product Dimensions: 15.3 x 2.1 x 23.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 359,712 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

'Both brave and intellectually honest...It is, in parts - especially early on - a brilliant book' --Sunday Times, May 23, 2010

'Zoe Strimpel is hooked by this dense, powerful meditation on religion, family and society' --City AM, May 13,2010

'a bold and passionately written book which should be essential reading for any politician [dealing with]...Islamism and immigration' --Evening Standard, May 13, 2010

'in this memoir she reiterates her strong preference for Western democracy and the urgent need for Englightenment values'
--The Times, May 22, 2010

'A story of rivalry, political intrigue and conspiracy . . . beguilingly written' --Guardian

'A rich and intricate story . . . full of colourful incident and detail, both historical and artistic . . . Jonathan Jones writes with engaging passion'
--RA Magazine

'Fearlessly uncompromising, it's no wonder [Hirsi Ali] has won plaudits from the likes of Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens' --Shortlist

'A bold and passionately written book, essential for any politician dealing with the closely related problems of Islamism and immigration' --Scotsman

`Confrontational, stinging, unsparing: Hirsi Ali has positioned herself at a pole that courts odium and danger' --Financial Times

`For anyone who has ever felt a tinge of rose-tinted nostalgia for the traditional . . . a bracing, and on the whole healthy, cold shower'
--Economist

'To all those who argue that feminism is a dead cause, I recommend a few hours in this woman's company' --The Times, Summer reading choice

'[Hirsi Ali] combines a withering blast against liberals and multiculturalism alongside pen portraits of her own Muslim family'
--Daily Telegraph

About the Author

Ayaan Hirsi Ali was born in Somalia, was raised as a Muslim, and spent her childhood and young adulthood in Africa and Saudi Arabia. In 1992 Hirsi Ali went to the Netherlands as a refugee, escaping a forced marriage to a distant cousin she had never met. She denounced Islam after 9/11 and now works as a Dutch parliamentarian, fighting for the rights of Muslim women in Europe, the enlightenment of Islam, and for security in the West.

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

51 of 59 people found the following review helpful By A. Norman on 20 May 2010
Format: Paperback
Hirsi Ali's previous book, 'Infidel', ranks as one of the best I've ever read. If it were a work of fiction, I would acclaim its writer as one of the greatest of our time. That it is also true makes it even more of a compelling read. 'Nomad' is its worthy successor in every way. Whereas 'Infidel' was a systematic account of her life, this book constitutes more of a compendious collection of her messages about women, integration of Muslims into Western society, and personal freedom. The result is a stunning thesis, drawing from a myriad of sources, to construct an argument of compelling, inexorable logic, while still retaining the compassion and humanity of its predecessor.

The book itself is divided into four sections. In the first, she gives accounts of the lives of her immediate family members, and describes in each case how a combination of tribal mentalities and the oppressions of Islam have ruined their lives. In the second, she tells of how she came to leave the Netherlands, why she chose to live in the United States, and the status of Islam there. In the third, she explains each of the three reasons which she believes hinder integration of Muslims into Western society. In the fourth, she details what we can do about it. (All of this is listed and explained in the Introduction to the book.) Some of the book is derived from her own personal experiences, other parts are from the experiences of people she knows, and some is from other sources. All of it is moving, fascinating and inspiring.

It is a rare book that can simultaneously horrify you, with its blunt, uncensored, hard truths, and uplift you with its message of reason, hope, and Enlightenment values. I couldn't recommend it more.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By verydeb on 12 Oct. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have just read Infidel and Nomad by AH Ali and was fascinated by her life history and inspired by her courage. As a Somalian who has lived in several Muslim countries as well as Holland and the USA I felt she really knew the problems related to her faith and could not be accused of racism. A Must read!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Brave lady, fascinating book about her experiences growing up as a Muslim in Somalia, Kenya and Saudi Arabia and becoming an atheist and campaigner for Enlightenment values in Holland and the United States. Compliments her earlier book Infidel.

Most books available on Amazon that are critical of Islam attract a few 1 Star reviews from people writing under names like "Sword of Truth" or "Allahu Akbar" alleging that the book is completely meritless and tells us nothing about Islam. I expect this book will attract one or two in due course. Pay no attention. Do seek out videos on YouTube of the author Ayaan Hirsi Ali speaking.

As the author Ayaan Hirsi Ali writes in this book:

"Muhammad says my husband can beat me and that I am worth half as much as a man. Is it I who am being disrespectful to Muhammad in criticizing his legacy, or is it he who is being disrespectful to me?"
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By P. Mandeville on 1 July 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I admire Ayann Hirsi Ali; she has achieved so much in her life. However she is beginning to repeat herself a bit - unless this book is compiled from various articles? It is still an interesting read especially if you havent read anything by her before. I agree with her points on the reformation of Islam, although that religion is interpreted so differently by different people. My husband is a Muslim, from Gambia - I am an atheist. Some people need the reassurance they seem to get from believing in a God and good luck to them as long as they dont impost their views on others. It would be even more interesting if she could consider what would be the best method of producing inward debate among Muslims - acceptance is the foundation of the religion, so difficult to shift.
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22 of 28 people found the following review helpful By MarkusG on 25 May 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Ayaan Hirsi Ali grew up in muslim societies in Somalia, Saudi etc, and fled to Holland when her father tried to wed her to a man in Canada. Hirsi Ali is today one of the most prominent critics of islam. And the price for this is living with bodyguards under constant threat of death. If you want a feel-good or PC description of life under islam, this book is not for you.

After an introduction "Nomad" deals with Hirsi Alis' family, and the problematic relations with her father and mother after she chose to become an "infidel". This part is very interesting as it provides glimpses of life in a muslim family and culture. It is also a story of opression of women, physical violence, sexual taboos and the fear of hell.

The following part is about her move to USA. She really likes the US, but sees it as threatened from the inside by the rise of fundamentalist islam. She is met by angry muslims when holding speeches at universities (in one case, a girl in headscarf cried out "Who in hell gives you the right to talk about islam?". And another student replied: "The first amendment!". "That was inspiring", Hirsi Ali comments (p 135).) She also comments on how there are student activist groups for everything, but nothing for the right of muslim women, women fleeing islam or against violence in the name of islam.

She also delivers in depth criticism of islam as an opressive system where women are reduced to breeding machines under sex apartheid, and where people are taught to be submissive, afraid of allah, and not to question religious authority. This has created docile subjects, easily manipulated by radical imams.

The temperature rises when Hirsi Ali confronts western feminists who have failed to criticise the opression of women under islam.
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