“Meaning of Nakbah”

I was reading yesterday for the umpteenth times the classic book, Ma`na An-Nakbah, by Constantine Zurayq. It is one of the five most important political books written in Arabic in the 20th century. It is written for the average reader and carries a very strong message. It is amazing that he wrote it a few months after the loss of Palestine in May 1948. So many of what he said still applies, sixty years later. He refers to Zionism as the "greatest danger" facing the Arab world (p. 20). He recommends that Arab students be taught that day and night (p. 22). I urge Arab (and Western) readers to read it. I think that there is an English translation (or English translations of large chunks of it).

PS What a small world. In 1992, I was standing in the buffet line at a mountain resort in Virgina. There I see Constantine Zuraqy (in his 80s) at the buffet table. I don't normally do that, but I had to since I never met him before: I walked up to him and said. You are Constantine Zurayq. It is enough for me that you inspired someone like George Habash. He looked at me and...filled his plate.

Posted on March 4, 2010 by As'ad