From Fatwa to Jihad

From Fatwa to Jihad : The Rushdie Affair and Its Legacy

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Twenty years ago, the image of burning copies of Salman Rushdie's "The Satanic Verses" held aloft by thousand-strong mobs of protestors became an internationally familiar symbol of anger and offence. Kenan Malik examines how the Rushdie affair transformed the debate worldwide on multiculturalism, tolerance and free speech, helped fuel the rise of radical Islam and pointed the way to the horrors of 9/11 and 7/7.

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Product details

  • Paperback | 352 pages
  • 128 x 192 x 24mm | 258.55g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1843548259
  • 9781843548256
  • 426,886

Review quote

"'A gripping account of how we went from burning books to bombs on buses. The Rushdie Affair has shaped all our lives. This book shows us how.' Hanif Kureishi * 'A thorough and highly readable history of the politics of the Rushdie affair and an important intervention in the current debate on freedom of expression.' Monica Ali 'A riveting political history of contemporary Britain... Impeccably researched, brimming with detail, yet razor-sharp in its argument.' Lisa Appignanesi, Independent"

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About Kenan Malik

Kenan Malik is a writer, lecturer and broadcaster. He is a Visiting Senior Fellow in the Department of Political, International and Policy Studies at the University of Surrey. He is a presenter of Analysis on Radio 4 and a panellist on The Moral Maze. His books include The Meaning of Race (1996), Man, Beast and Zombie (2000) and Strange Fruit: Why Both Sides are Wrong in the Race Debate (2008).

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Customer reviews

'This is the first book to examine the powerful effect on freedom of speech and expression of the fatwa on Salman Rushdie in 1989. It is one of those rare books that tells you what, the sound and fury apart, is really going on. Malik probes the culture of self-censorship and political posturing that erodes free speech and skilfully questions the positions of the left and liberals. In his words: "If we invite the state to define the boundaries of acceptable speech, we cannot complain if it is not just speech to which we object that gets curtailed."' The Orwell Prize is Britain's most prestigious prize for political writing. The Book Prize judges for 2010 were Jonathan Heawood (director, English PEN), Andrew Holgate (literary editor, Sunday Times) and Francine Stock (writer and broadcaster).show more
by The Orwell Prize