Late last year I joined a couple of book clubs, the History Book Club and the Scientific American Book Club, and I received a passel of texts to digest for the new year. The books I am now reading and finishing up are the following:
The Three Pound Enigma - The Human Brain and the Quest to Unlock Its Mysteries, by Shannon Moffett. The author is a medical student and a writer, and her book focuses mightily on consciousness and how it relates to the physiological properties of the brain. Visit her website, linked above, to learn more about her book and the themes she explores.
The Iron Cage: The Story of the Palestinian Struggle for Statehood, by Rashid Khalidi, Professor of Arab Studies and Chair of the Middle East Institute at Columbia University. Another book about the seemingly intractable Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Professor Khalidi attempts to illuminate the reasons why the Palestinians were never able to cement their own state in the land of their birth, starting from the Ottoman Period up to the present time.
The Great War for Civilisation; The Conquest of the Middle East, by Robert Fisk, journalist for the British newspaper, The Independent. Mr. Fisk is one of my favorite writers, and his long experience in the Middle East as a journalist gives his first hand accounts of the major events of that troubled region an intense poignancy and relevance. It is a massive tome, this book, but no doubt it will be well worth the read, as is most everything he writes about the Middle East.