Journalist Goodwin travels to 10 countries to interview Muslim women who reveal how their oppressive and confining political systems have affected their lives. (Aug.)
In this astonishing book, the product of four years of living in the Islamic world, journalist Goodwin ( Caught in the Crossfire , LJ 3/15/82) examines the movement that is aggressively spreading a fundamentalist version of Islam throughout much of the world. Her interviews with Muslim women in ten countries both fascinate and disturb, for their candor reveals the movement's profound and often devastating effects on them. Maintaining that Muslims understand the West far better than Westerners understand Islam, Goodwin warns against the Western ethnocentrism that could jeopardize both security and energy resources. Instead, she urges greater understanding of ``the world's fastest growing religion'' and of its treatment of women, who ``are the wind sock showing which way the wind is blowing in the Islamic world''--or as one interviewee put it, ``the canaries in the mines.'' The work itself enhances this understanding. A necessary purchase.-- Cynthia Widmer, Downingtown, Pa.
Journalist Goodwin interviewed women from all walks of life in Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Gaza and the West Bank of Israel, Jordan, Egypt, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and the United Arab Emirates in pursuit of understanding the heavily restricted lives of women under Islam. She shows how the repressive politics that govern women's personal lives are also a barometer to the growth of fundamentalism and the Muslim regimes' willingness to appease extremists. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)