The Lotus Revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt have come as no surprise to author Tarek Heggy. In his outstanding book The Arab Cocoon - now in paperback - Heggy clearly lays out the reasons that have prevented Arab societies from joining the West in the march of progress, and the tensions that this has created internally, as well as between the Arab world and the West. Heggy explores a widespread anti-modernity and anti-integration religious Islamic movement, out-dated educational systems, and an unhealthy hatred of the 'other' in the Arab world. He shows that the resulting systemic rejection of modernity and progress is the direct cause for the confrontation between most of the Arabic-speaking peoples and the West. It ensures that Arab culture, people, and their mentality are unable to integrate in the march of civilization, based on progress and modernity. Very little has been written in depth on the Arab culture and mind. Writing in an informative and accessible style, Tarek Heggy offers the depth needed to understand and deal with this expanding anti-modernity culture, against which the youth of the region are revolting, in one society after the other, using the very tools of modern technology.
17 March 2011