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Arabian Sands by Wilfred 	 Thesiger
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Arabian Sands (1959)

by Wilfred Thesiger

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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7721611,968 (4.23)47
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English (15)  Dutch (1)  All languages (16)
Showing 1-5 of 15 (next | show all)
A remarkable, captivating and moving book recording a world on the brink of disappearing. For a full review please see my blog:
http://theidlewoman.blogspot.co.uk/2014/09/arabian-sands-wilfred-thesiger.html ( )
  Leander2010 | Sep 13, 2014 |
Travels across the Empty Quarter of Arabia on camel in the 1940s. Although it's a very interesting and readable story, and not one I'll forget any time soon, Thesiger is a strange and rather unlikeable sort of person.
  seabear | May 21, 2014 |
Five years spent in southern Arabia, Yemen and Oman are chronicled by Thesiger. Classic British travelogue by another Brit not comfortable being one. But a great look at the quantumm leap the Arabs took from being fierce bedu to "hanging around on street corners". Also intriguing were the differences between tribes and how the Sauds used the Wahabi's to extend theirs. There are more than one Arabias. ( )
  JBreedlove | Oct 30, 2012 |
Thesiger found his deep-down nomad soul when he explored the Empty Quarter with the Bedu. I wish he had not included the sentence "I shot 70 lions" but overall his writing is beautiful and fills me with nostalgia for a life I could never have known. Lots of interesting information about camels, too. ( )
  overthemoon | Apr 13, 2012 |
While this was an entertaining read and provided an excellent insight into Bedouin culture it remains in the shadow of Lawrence's Seven Pillars. In fact I believe that to be the case why Thesiger wasn't so inclined to publish it in the first place and faced with the fact that his thirst for exploration and part of his reason for taking up life with the Bedouin was because of Lawrence's experiences - which cannot be surpassed in terms of English literature in the Arab world. Thesiger's influence is made more clear in his portrayal of himself with matched closely the modesty Lawrence had and the poignancy with which he wrote of the Bedu. Thesiger certainly wasn't a modest man. But in short it is excellent reading. ( )
  Pandaros | Jul 8, 2011 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Wilfred Thesigerprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Stewart, RoryIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To bin Kabina and bin Ghabaisha
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A cloud gathers, the rain falls, men live; the cloud disperses without rain, and men and animals die.
Quotations
Here in the desert I had found all that I had asked....Some people maintain that they [the Bedu] will be better off when they have exchanged the hardship and poverty of the desert for the security of a materialistic world. This I do not believe. I shall always remember how often I was humbled by those illiterate herdsmen who possessed, in so much greater measure than I, generosity and courage, endurance, patience, and light-hearted gallantry. Among no other people have I ever felt the same sense of personal inferiority. [310]
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0140095144, Paperback)

"Arabian Sands" is Wilfred Thesiger's record of his extraordinary journey through the parched "Empty Quarter" of Arabia. Educated at Eton and Oxford, Thesiger was repulsed by the softness and rigidity of Western life-"the machines, the calling cards, the meticulously aligned streets." In the spirit of T. E. Lawrence, he set out to explore the deserts of Arabia, traveling among peoples who had never seen a European and considered it their duty to kill Christian infidels. His now-classic account is invaluable to understanding the modern Middle East.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:19:50 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

"Born in Addis Ababa in 1910 and educated in England, from 1945 Wilfred Thesiger spent five years exploring in and around the vast, waterless desert, the 'Empty Quarter' of Arabia. Travelling amongst the Bedu people, he experienced their everyday challenges of hunger and thirst, the trials of long marches beneath the relentless sun, the bitterly cold nights and the constant danger of death if it was discovered he was a Christian 'infidel'. He was the first European to visit most of the region, and just before he left the area the process that would change it forever had begun - the discovery of oil. Thesiger saw Arabian Sands as 'a memorial to a vanished past, a tribute to a once magnificent people'." "This edition includes an introduction by Rory Stewart discussing the dangers of Thesiger's travels, his unconventional personality and his insights into Bedu life."--BOOK JACKET.… (more)

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Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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