In a critical review of John A. Hall's Ernest Gellner: An Intellectual Biography for The New Republic, John Gray opens by agreeing with Hall on one particular point—that Gellner was an exceptionally honest thinker:
John A. Hall concludes his account of Ernest Gellner by observing that his outlook on the world was austere. "But therein lies its attraction," he goes on. "Not much real comfort for our woes is on offer; the consolations peddled in the market are indeed worthless. What Gellner offered was something more mature and demanding: cold intellectual honesty." Brief personal impressions are rarely conclusive, especially when recalled after many years; but that Gellner was an exceptionally honest thinker is beyond reasonable doubt.
The Millions, one of the US's most-respected literary sites, has called The Art of Asking Your Boss for a Raise one of the most-anticipated books of 2011, noting that
We readers will have to deal with the fortunate burden of clearing shelf-space for another novel by Perec this spring, with the first English translation of The Art of Asking Your Boss for a Raise.
Visit The Millions to see the full list of recommended reading for 2011.
The New Left Project website have published an in-depth interview with Ece Temelkuran about her book, Deep Mountain, by Jamie Stern-Weiner:
You say that in Turkey people are encouraged to be indifferent to the issue—you write in the book that "a nation can forget en masse". What are the mechanisms by which this takes place?
There is huge propaganda in the schools against Armenians, but it's not only that. It's on the street, it's everywhere. ‘Armenian' is a curse word in Turkish, still. And when you ask people about Armenians, you get this blank expression. It's like you've entered the wrong password and their brain just stops, and the password is ‘Armenian'. They go blank.
Al Jazeera and the Guardian and Al Quds (Arabic) newspapers yesterday released over 1600 confidential documents laying open the last decade of Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations. The papers go well beyond refuting the threadbare myth that the Israelis have had no 'partner for peace', and show rather how weak and incompetent officials betrayed Palestinians by offering to surrender "virtually everything except their salaries", as Tariq Ali puts it on the London Review of Books blog. As Ali notes, it is well worth revisiting Edward Said's prophetic 1994 article for the LRB in which he described the Oslo accords as a "Palestinian Versailles" in the light of these revelations.