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5.0 out of 5 stars A voice for the unspoken, 3 Mar 2014
By 
C. Edwards (Leeds U.K.) - See all my reviews
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I found the book engaging and well written. It does have areas of repetition and occasionally almost commits the crime of overstating conjecture from a very little fact, as the work complains clerics and law officers do in regard to homosexuality.
These episodes are rare and mild and do not detract from what is a valuable work.
It is well balanced on the whole. There is an invisibility of lesbian voices, but I suspect this is due to their voices being even harder to hear than the men in the discussed cultures per se. The work strives to refer to texts as well as interviews from which the female experience is perhaps almost absent.
There is discussion relating to various countries and I was particularly interested in the difference in levels of persecution and stated law in various countries and the Israeli/Arab situation and references.

The book is a good balance of personal stories and academic reference and whilst perhaps not 'enjoyable' is not a technical read by any means and is well explained and ordered so that it is very accessible.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Impressively scholarly but never dull, 17 July 2014
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This review is from: Unspeakable Love: Gay and Lesbian Life in the Middle East (Paperback)
Fascinating and immensely readable and lucid. His breadth of references is truly impressive.
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12 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A true insight, 15 Aug 2006
Firstly can I just say that this book is a must for anyone who is interested in human rights, gay rights and/or the arab world.

I thorougly enjoyed reading this book and I read it in the space of a few days. It is very factual and makes you appreciate how lucky we are to live in the society that we do.

The only bad thing I have to say about this book is that it can be a bit repetitive in places and all the chapters are mainly about the same kind of thing. Also it did lack more of the lesbian side of things. It is about a very important topic at this moment in time due to the vast amount of publicity the middle east has been recieving.

So all in all, this is a fantastic book and I would recommend it to anyone.
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3 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Good Overview of Gay and Lesbian Life in the Middle East, 10 Aug 2008
By 
Oliver (Los Angeles) - See all my reviews
Brian Whitaker is a journalist (the Middle East Editor of The Guardian), so it is not surprising that Unspeakable Love relies heavily on interviews. Much of the book consists of quotations from interviews, websites or other sources. Nevertheless, the book is far more than a collection of things other people have said. Whitaker clearly knows much about the Middle East and has a thoughtful approach to the issues he discusses. For my taste, however, he is too gentle on the dysfunctional governments, societies and economies of the Middle East -- not to mention Islam itself. These are purely my views, however, and do not change the fact that Whitaker has much of value to say. This book is definitely worth reading if you have any interest in the topics he discusses.
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars no title, 25 May 2008
By 
C. A. Govan "Chloe Govan" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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This is an absolutely fascinating book. It was a quick read and fun to devour over a lazy afternoon. It is interesting to see cultural differences in how homosexuals are portrayed. It features case studies with real people giving the book a personalised feel and a study of what the Qur'an says on the matter.

Two boys received the death sentence in Iran and whilst some claimed it was rape - NOT sodomy - that they were being sentenced for, others felt that this was a cover-up by the government to avoid indignation from the United Nations and the West.
Since hearing about that, i have been interested in the issue and this book was more than able to satisfy that interest.
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Unspeakable Love: Gay and Lesbian Life in the Middle East
Unspeakable Love: Gay and Lesbian Life in the Middle East by Brian Whitaker (Paperback - 27 Jun 2011)
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