Seven years ago this week, The Washington Institute for Near East Policy published my book Ivory Towers on Sand: The Failure of Middle Eastern Studies in America. I’m pleased to announce that as of this morning, and for the first time, the entire book is available from the Institute as a free download (pdf). Click here to download.
The book appeared six weeks after 9/11 (here’s the New York Times report of its publication), and had a much greater impact than I imagined it would when I wrote it. The Institute and I hope that by making it freely available, Ivory Towers on Sand will live yet another life, especially among today’s university and college students. If you are a student or know a student, share the link. If you are in a Middle East course, send the link to your classmates and ask your professor to discuss the book in class. If you are a faculty member, it’s now easy to include the book in your next syllabus. (It should definitely be in the syllabus of any course that assigns Zachary Lockman’s Contending Visions of the Middle East, where Ivory Towers is critiqued over half a dozen pages. Students should be encouraged to read both books and form their own opinion.)
As an additional incentive to download the book, be advised that the text includes many a reference to the sayings and doings of Rashid Khalidi, the Palestinian-American professor who is much in the news for his long-standing friendship with Barack Obama.