A House of Many Mansions: The History of Lebanon Reconsidered

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University of California Press, 1990 - History - 254 pages
2 Reviews
Today Lebanon is one of the world's most divided countries. But paradoxically the faction-ridden Lebanese, both Christians and Muslims, have never shown a keener consciousness of common identity. How can this be? In the light of modern scholarship, a famous Lebanese writer and scholar examines the historical myths on which his country's warring communities have based their conflicting visions of the Lebanese nation. He shows that Lebanon cannot afford this divisiveness, that in order to develop and maintain a sense of political unity, it is necesary to distinuish fact from fiction and then build on what is real in the common experience of both groups.

Salibi offers a major reinterpretation of Lebanese history and provides remarkable insights into the dynamic of Lebanon's recent conflict. In so doing, he illuminates important facets of his country's present and future. This book also gives a masterly account of how the imagined communities that underlie modern nationalism are created and will be of interest to students of international affairs as well as Near Eastern scholars.

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Review: A House of Many Mansions: The History of Lebanon Reconsidered

User Review  - Mohamed Awada - Goodreads

Wonderful book about the multiple historical views of Lebanon! I highly recommend this book to understand the flaws in all the available historical views Read full review

Review: A House of Many Mansions: The History of Lebanon Reconsidered

User Review  - Gus - Goodreads

I wish they'd have taught us the history of Lebanon using this book rather than the insipid tales they used in school. This book is an eye opener on the roots of the issues the country and the region ... Read full review


How it all began
The confidence game
Talking geography
Rose among the thorns
The Maronite record
The imagined principality
The mountain refuge
how unique?
Phoenicia resurrected
Trial and error
The war over Lebanese history
A house of many mansions
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About the author (1990)

Kamal Salibi is Professor of History at the American University of Beirut. He has published many articles, and among his books are The Modern History of Lebanon and Crossroads to Civil War.

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