The World Through Arab Eyes: Arab Public Opinion and the Reshaping of the Middle East
by Shibley Telhami
Basic Books, 2013
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"A finely calibrated study of public opinion in the Middle East.... Telhami weaves mountains of data into a lucid, thoughtful account of shifting attitudes, one that registers the impact of the Internet and Al Jazeera in changing attitudes and the growing influence public attitudes exert over government policy, especially since the Arab Spring. The result is an unusually rich portrait of the Arab worldview.”

—Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“Arab public opinion, newly codified and relevant....An intriguing, revealing study of Arabs' changing views of themselves and the world as their countries open up – deserves a wide audience.”

—Kirkus Reviews

“Too much debate on the future of the Arab world is based on outdated ideas about what Arabs want. In The World Through Arab Eyes, Shibley Telhami captures the prisms through which Arabs see the world. He combines the knowledge and perspective of a major scholar with a treasure trove of Arab public opinion. This book will be valuable to anyone hoping to understand this rapidly changing region.”

—Jimmy Carter

“America’s leading interpreter of the Arab world, always judicious in his judgments and penetrating in his analysis, has written a book that every American concerned with the challenges that American foreign policy faces in the Middle East should read.”

—Zbigniew Brzezinski

“Not since Edward Said’s Orientalism has a scholar so effectively distilled the Arab collective self and its complex relations to ‘the others’, as Shibley Telhami has in The World Through Arab Eyes. Unlike hundreds of speculative books written about Arabs and Muslims since 9/11, Telhami has meticulously managed to get the Arabs to tell their stories in facts and figures—providing crisp analysis along the way. The book is a must read for students, scholars, policy makers, and anyone interested in the Middle East.”

—Saad Eddin Ibrahim, Egyptian Sociologist and Human Rights Activist

“A wonderfully thoughtful and penetrating exploration of Arab attitudes at an epic turning point for the Middle East. Shibley Telhami, a world-class political analyst, provides original insights that will be tremendously important in understanding where the region is headed—and why. A must read for anyone interested in the world’s most volatile and strategic arena.”

—Robin Wright, author of Rock the Casbah: Rage and Rebellion Across the Islamic World

“A powerful and definitive guide to Arab attitudes, answering questions that Americans have posed since 9/11. Eschewing hyperbole and drama, Shibley Telhami systematically dissects Arab views about themselves and their identity, toward Israel and the United States, and regarding democracy, women’s rights, and the uprisings. Policy makers must read this book, and so too should Americans still puzzled by the politics and attitudes of Arabs.”

—Daniel Kurtzer, S. Daniel Abraham Professor in Middle East Policy Studies, Princeton University, and former U.S. Ambassador to Egypt and Israel

“Telhami brilliantly inserts his sophisticated and commanding understanding of the Arab world into discourses that have for too long neglected to accurately portray the preferences of ordinary Arabs. This magisterial book should serve as the primary resource guiding academic and policy debates about the attitudes of Arab citizens.”

—Amaney Jamal, Associate Professor of Politics and Director of the Bobst Center for Peace and Justice, Princeton University

Last modified
08/11/2015 - 3:54 pm