Oriana Fallaci Once Again For


Oriana Fallaci Once Again

For whatever reason, I find this writer absolutely fascinating. We're treated to a review of her most recent book at The Weekly Standard. An excerpt of that review follows:

ITALIAN JOURNALIST and professional provocateur Oriana Fallaci may once have embodied enlightened postwar Western Europe. But with the release of her new book, "The Rage and the Pride"--a biting polemic against anti-Americanism, political correctness, and Islam's "reverse crusade"--she has managed to become a pariah in European intellectual circles.

A self-declared "political refugee," Fallaci broke her ten-year refusal to comment on political issues after the terrorist atrocities committed by Islamic fundamentalists on September 11. Sick with cancer, the seventy-two-year-old Fallaci, who spends most of her time in New York City, let her fury erupt in an "anger that eliminates every detachment." Only days after the attacks, the Milan newspaper Corriere della Sera published Fallaci's scathing essay entitled "La Rabbia e l'Orgoglio." The article was a sensation, igniting bitter controversy all over Europe. Soon after, the Italian publisher Rizzoli persuaded her to extend her essay into a small book, which has sold one million copies in Italy, and has now been translated into English by Fallaci herself.

Fallaci's antagonists have accused her of being a xenophobe and Islamophobe. In France, an anti-racist group has attempted to have her book banned. Two other groups demanded disclaimers that the book doesn't accurately portray Islam. The head of Editions Grasset, one of France's most prominent publishers, said: "It's a regressive book, which will be read by people with reptilian brains." Rana Kabbani wrote, "Fallaci's hatred and fear of Muslims is both visceral and hysterical."

Fallaci--an anti-Fascist resistance fighter as a teenager and a war correspondent for most of her career as a journalist--is unlikely to have been motivated by fear. "The Rage and the Pride" is unfocused, but it is not hysterical, and, though uncompromising, is certainly not visceral. "War you wanted, war you want?" she declares. "Good. As far as I am concerned, war is and war will be. Until the last breath."

With words like those above coming from French critics, you know it must be worth reading.

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This page contains a single entry by Steven Riddle published on October 25, 2002 6:38 PM.

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