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The Tenth Parallel: Dispatches from the Faultline Between Christianity and Islam Paperback – 1 Mar 2012


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Product details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin (1 Mar 2012)
  • Language: Unknown
  • ISBN-10: 0241952239
  • ISBN-13: 978-0241952238
  • Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 1.9 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 333,465 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

Her dispatches are compelling. She writes beautifully ... and explains more than any newspaper headline, what has gone wrong (Michael Binyon The Times )

A fascinating journey ... full of arresting stories woven around a provocative issue, which Griswold investigates through individual lives rather than caricatures or abstractions (Linda Robinson New York Times )

Fresh and arresting (Independent )

The author brings to her book a sharp eye for telling details and a keen sense of place ... she visits some of the riskiest places on the planet and tracks down terrorists, warlords, renegade priests and aspiring Christian martyrs (Michael Mewshaw Washington Post )

Revolutionary (Desmond Tutu )

About the Author

Eliza Griswold, a fellow at the New America Foundation, received both the first Robert I. Friedman Award for investigative reporting and a 2010 Rome Prize from the American Academy in Rome and wasa 2007 Nieman Fellow at Harvard University. Her journalism has appeared in The Atlantic, The New Yorker,The New York Times Magazine, and Harper's Magazine, among others. A collection of her poems, Wideawake Field, was published by FSG in 2007.

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Michael Mayes on 19 May 2012
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In the aftermath of 9/11 and the beginning of "the war on terror", there was a dangerously simplistic view that civilisation itself was faced with destruction at the hands of fanatical, radical Islam. Not a few very high-profile writers and broadcasters seized the opportunity to proclaim that it was absolutely the fault of religion in all its manifestations, and the sooner we get rid of that the safer we will be.

The truth is vastly more complex, and Eliza Griswold's book "The Tenth Parallel" is an invaluable exploration of the bewildering forces at work in a rapidly shrinking world. The "Tenth Parallel" is a line of latitude across the world, stretching from Africa to the Far East, which is the meeting-point between very different worlds, North and South (or "developed and "developing") the West and the Rest, Christian and Moslem. Religion, politics, economics, hostile climate, geography, scarcity of resources, population, and constant migration are all ingredients in a very volatile mixture. In many ways the Tenth Parallel can be compared to the fault line between gigantic tectonic plates on the earth's crust, where destructive earthquakes are part and parcel of daily life.

Griswold's book, which is a collection of her journalistic dispatches over seven years along the Tenth Parallel, covers a wide spectrum. It gives us insights into the complex forces at work and the effects they have on the lives of individuals, families and communities, from conflict over scarce resources and land to the courageous efforts of a Moslem mullah and a Christian pastor to foster peace in a Nigerian town.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By James on 21 May 2012
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This is a well-presented and thought provoking description of events many miles away from where I live, but equally relevant to us multi-cultured ways in the west. To anyone who want to understand and appreciate the situations raised and discussed, I would recommend this book. It's easy to read, and powerful in content!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Mr. D. P. Jay on 22 Aug 2012
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This book is bad news for those `liberals' like me who believer in interfaith dialogue; who believe that living and working side by side will lead to better understanding.

In many, mostly poor, countries where the population is split between Christianity and Islam, each religion is desperate to expand and dominate by procreation and evangelism. Politicians seem to encourage this enmity and competition because it keeps them in power and keeps the population preoccupied.

With half the population aged under eighteen, it is not difficult to see why there is so much religious fanaticism and homophobia. The author is the daughter of a former presiding bishop in the Anglican Church in the US and has seen at first hand the seemingly intractable problems within the Anglican Communion. She writes well. She may be a journalist but she is not a `hack'. She shows generosity and is most gracious towards those with whom she disagrees and shows great empathy.

There are some glimmers of hope. There are some Muslim and Christian leaders who work tirelessly together to dispel and `deprogramme' intolerance and hatred. But we need more of them.
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