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Lawrence in Arabia: War, Deceit, Imperial Folly and the Making of the Modern Middle East - Hardcover

 
9781782391999: Lawrence in Arabia: War, Deceit, Imperial Folly and the Making of the Modern Middle East
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A thrilling and revelatory narrative of one of the most epic and consequential periods in twentieth century history -- the Arab Revolt and the secret game to control the Middle East.

The Arab revolt against the Turks in World War I was, in the words of T. E. Lawrence, ''a sideshow of a sideshow.'' As a result, the conflict was shaped to a remarkable degree by a small handful of adventurers and low-level officers far removed from the corridors of power. Curt Prüfer was an academic attached to the German embassy in Cairo whose clandestine role was to foment jihad against British rule. Aaron Aaronsohn was a renowned agronomist and committed Zionist who gained the trust of the Ottoman governor of Palestine even as he built an elaborate anti-Ottoman spy ring. William Yale was a fallen scion of the American aristocracy who traveled the Ottoman Empire on behalf of Standard Oil, dissembling to the Turks in order to gain valuable oil concessions. At the center of it all was Lawrence. In early 1914 he was an archaeologist digging ruins in Syria; by 1917 he was riding into legend at the head of an Arab army, as he fought a rearguard action against his own government and its imperial ambitions.

Based on four years of intensive primary document research, Lawrence in Arabia definitively overturns received wisdom on how the modern Middle East was formed. Sweeping in its action, keen in its portraiture, acid in its condemnation of the destruction wrought by European colonial plots, this is a book that brilliantly captures the way in which the folly of the past creates the anguish of the present.

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Review:
An Amazon Best Book of the Month, August 2013: Scott Anderson’s Lawrence in Arabia is a marvel of a history book. The research is impeccable. The story is fascinating and unforgettable. And the characters are so compelling that they seem to have been plucked from a novel. During World War I, the course of the modern day Middle East was set by a handful of young, low-ranking actors who exerted oversized influence on the region. Anderson focuses our attention on four men: a minor German diplomat and spy, an American oilman descended from the Yale family, a Romanian-born agronomist, and T.E. Lawrence himself. As we witness the western nations attempting to carve up a region that they were never able to master, these adventurous and often duplicitous men come to full life--none more so than Lawrence. The amount of research it must have taken to write this book is astounding. But there is no filler here: this is the kind of detail that causes the narrative to pop, that makes it live and breathe, and it will keep you reading long into the night. --Chris Schluep
About the Author:
SCOTT ANDERSON is a veteran war correspondent whose work frequently appears in New York Times Magazine and Vanity Fair.

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  • PublisherAtlantic Books
  • Publication date2014
  • ISBN 10 1782391991
  • ISBN 13 9781782391999
  • BindingHardcover
  • Number of pages575
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First Edition. Fine cloth copy in an equally fine dust-wrapper. Particularly well-preserved; tight, bright, clean and strong. Literally as new. Physical description: x, 575 pages, 24 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations, maps ; 24 cm. Notes: Includes bibliographical references and index. Contents; Playboys in the holy land -- A very unusual type -- Another and another nice thing -- To the last million -- A despicable mess -- The keepers of secrets -- Treachery -- The battle joined -- The man who would be kingmaker -- Neatly in the void -- A mist of deceits -- An audacious scheme -- Aqaba -- Hubris -- To the flame -- A gathering fury -- Solitary pursuits -- Damascus -- Epilogue: Paris. Subjects: Lawrence, T. E. (Thomas Edward) 1888-1935. Great Britain. Army ; Biography. World War, 1914-1918 Campaigns Middle East. World War, 1914-1918 Campaigns Turkey. Soldiers Great Britain ; Biography. 1 Kg. Seller Inventory # 380069

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First Edition. Fine cloth copy in an equally fine dust-wrapper. Particularly well-preserved; tight, bright, clean and strong. Literally as new. Physical description: x, 575 pages, 24 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations, maps ; 24 cm. Notes: Includes bibliographical references and index. Contents; Playboys in the holy land -- A very unusual type -- Another and another nice thing -- To the last million -- A despicable mess -- The keepers of secrets -- Treachery -- The battle joined -- The man who would be kingmaker -- Neatly in the void -- A mist of deceits -- An audacious scheme -- Aqaba -- Hubris -- To the flame -- A gathering fury -- Solitary pursuits -- Damascus -- Epilogue: Paris. Subjects: Lawrence, T. E. (Thomas Edward) 1888-1935. Great Britain. Army ; Biography. World War, 1914-1918 Campaigns Middle East. World War, 1914-1918 Campaigns Turkey. Soldiers Great Britain ; Biography. 1 Kg. Seller Inventory # 380069

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Hardcover. Condition: Very Good. Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good. The Arab Revolt against the Turks in World War One was, in the words of T.E. Lawrence, 'a sideshow of a sideshow'. Amidst the slaughter in European trenches, the Western combatants paid scant attention to the Middle Eastern theatre. As a result, the conflict was shaped to a remarkable degree by a small handful of adventurers and low-level officers far removed from the corridors of power. At the centre of it all was Lawrence. In early 1914 he was an archaeologist excavating ruins in the sands of Syria; by 1917 he was battling both the enemy and his own government to bring about the vision he had for the Arab people. Operating in the Middle East at the same time, but to wildly different ends, were three other important players: a German attache, an American oilman and a committed Zionist. The intertwined paths of these four young men - the schemes they put in place, the battles they fought, the betrayals they endured and committed - mirror the grandeur, intrigue and tragedy of the war in the desert. Seller Inventory # 028125

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