In this gripping narrative history, Lesley Hazleton tells the tragic story at the heart of the ongoing rivalry between the Sunni and Shia branches of Islam, a rift that dominates the news now more than ever.
Even as Muhammad lay dying, the battle over who would take control of the new Islamic nation had begun, sparking a succession crisis marked by power grabs, assassination, political intrigue, and passionate faith. Soon Islam was embroiled in civil war, pitting its founder's controversial wife, Aisha, against his son-in-law, Ali, and shattering Muhammad's ideal of unity.
Combining meticulous research with compelling storytelling, After the Prophet explores the volatile intersections of religion and politics, psychology and culture, and history and current events. It is an indispensable guide to the depth and power of the Shia-Sunni split.
©2009 Lesley Hazleton (P)2016 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
I came to this book with a cursory understanding of Sunni/Shia differences, as well as -- if I'm honest, a fairly meager understanding of the history of Islam. This book pulls off a major feat in being both informational and riveting. Totally riveting. Stay-up-far-longer-than-intended riveting.
At first, I was somewhat skeptical of the narrator. Meaning simply that I wasn't sure from the sample that I would enjoy her narration.) Well, I more than enjoyed it; I loved it. I can't think of a better narrator for this
I realize that I may come across as being hyperbolic, but this is simply one of the best audiobooks I've ever listened to -- in any genre. If you have the slightest bit of interest in learning more about Islam, about divisions within the religion, or even just if you're looking for a story that will command your full attention...well, then I would highly recommend listening to this audiobook.
This book provides a good start for understanding the split that exist in Islam, I would highly recommend reading and listening to this book.
Absolutely loved it! Extremely detailed and gripping. I couldn't put it down. At the end of it, I was not sure if it was biased. The book spends a lot of time on Shia thought, not so much on sunni ideology. Absolutely loved it none the less. If you are unfamiliar with the history of these events, this is the book to read/listen to.
Fantastic read. Wonderful prose. Detailed history. Hazleton makes the complex history easy to understand and captivates the reader. A very even handed historical approach in my opinion. It sheds light on the core history of any Sunni - Shia tensions.
This was an incredible look at the complex history of the Sunni-Shia divide. She did a great job of bringing me into the world of early Islam. This provided me valuable context in which to understand current events and Muslim culture.
She's a great storyteller and I love her voice. I'll listen to this one many more times!
The early history of Islam was not well documented at the time. To put this story and all of early Islam into proper perspective I recommend "In The Shadow of the Sword" as a good start.
With historical accounts as these, it is often wise to remember that there is no such thing as an objective account of what happened. I thoroughly enjoyed this book, highly informative. However the choice of adjectives and tone taken towards some of the characters, particularly Aisha and Ali, can misconstrue their importance and the respect given to them by Muslims across the board.
I think this book provides a detailed image of history in the middle east. However, since I am unaware of the history, I would like to fact check it before I say it is entirely accurate. I liked how the story is unbias, since the author is an outsider looking in, but despite this I almost felt like Aiysha was painted in a harsh and negative light. Perhaps that is really how she was. In any case, I thought the ending was absolutely beautiful and shined light on the ummah of muslims.
Well written, researched and narrated. A poignant and epic tale that undercuts much of the Middle East's tensions throughout history and today. Should be required reading for all those involved in US Foreign Policy.
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