Al Qaeda and What it Means to Be Modern by John Gray - review by Michael Prowse

Michael Prowse

Reason And Unreason

Al Qaeda and What it Means to Be Modern


Faber & Faber 160pp £10.99 order from our bookshop

John Gray is an acknowledged master of the calculated overstatement. He likes to make us think. And he does it by throwing the equivalent of intellectual hand grenades.

Consider the following claim – and it is not atypical of his paradoxical style. 'It is the fact that radical Islam rejects reason that shows it is a modern movement.' Gray is here trying to bolster his argument that Al Qaeda is a quintessentially twenty-first-century phenomenon, rather than a barbaric throwback

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