10 books like Road through Kurdistan

By Archibald Milne Hamilton,

Here are 10 books that authors have personally recommended if you like Road through Kurdistan. Shepherd is a community of 7,000+ authors sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Kurdistan

By Susan Meiselas,

Book cover of Kurdistan: In the Shadow of History

This enormous repository of Kurdish history and culture is jam-packed with everything from photographs and maps, to excerpts from memoirs and letters, to clips from newspapers and government documents. Covering the period from the 1870s to the early 2000s, it includes accounts from both the Kurds themselves and outsiders. I poured over the book both before and after my travels, and each time I did, I discovered a powerful new narrative or image I hadn’t noticed before.

Kurdistan

By Susan Meiselas,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Kurdistan as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Kurdistan was erased from world maps after World War I, when the victorious powers carved up the Middle East, leaving the Kurds without a homeland. Today the Kurds, who live on land that straddles the borders of Turkey, Iran, Iraq, and Syria, are by far the largest ethnic group in the world without a state.Renowned photographer Susan Meiselas entered northern Iraq after the 1991 Gulf War to record the effects of Saddam Hussein's campaigns against Iraq's Kurdish population. She joined Human Rights Watch in documenting the destruction of Kurdish villages (some of which Hussein had attacked with chemical weapons in…


Memed, My Hawk

By Yashar Kemal, Edouard Roditi (translator),

Book cover of Memed, My Hawk

A Kurd born in Turkey in 1923, Kemal was a contender for the Nobel Prize for Literature for years, and this book is the real deal, a classic novel of adventure and heroism that has been compared to works by Faulkner. It’s not overtly about the Kurds—the ethnicity of its main character, Memed, is not mentioned—and yet it is, as Memed is a rebel who refuses to submit to authoritarian rule and risks everything for freedom. Fast-paced and gripping, yet also lyrical and meditative, the book is set in southeastern Turkey—i.e., Kurdistan—and its descriptions of the land are unforgettable. 

Memed, My Hawk

By Yashar Kemal, Edouard Roditi (translator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Memed, My Hawk as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Memed grows up a serf to a vicious overlord on the thistle-clad plains of Turkey's Taurus region. When his plan to escape is dashed, and the young woman he loves murdered, Memed makes for the mountains to become an outlaw. Before long he has transformed from a young rebel to an infamous bandit, the scourge of corrupt oppressors and hero to the poor. With vividness and simplicity, Kemal's classic novel evokes the fierce beauty of his country and the struggles of its oppressed people.


Children of the Jinn

By Margaret Kahn,

Book cover of Children of the Jinn: The Story of My Search for the Kurds and Their Country

Five years before Iran’s 1979 Islamic Revolution, Kahn traveled to northwest Iran to study the Kurdish language and teach English. Because Kurdish was outlawed at that time, she endured much suspicion and endless stonewalling before finally being welcomed into Kurdish homes. The result is this moving and groundbreaking work that in a sense paved the way for other travelogues about Kurdistan, including my own. Kahn writes beautifully about the Kurdish women she meets, the difficulties of understanding another culture, and the constant threats of living under SAVAK (then Iran’s secret police).

Children of the Jinn

By Margaret Kahn,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Children of the Jinn as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Forty years after the publication of Margaret Kahn's book, Children of the Jinn, Kurds, the fourth largest linguistic and ethnic group of the Middle East, are still being denied basic human rights. The book is an historical and ethnographic account of the lives and struggles of the individuals she met during the year Iraqi Kurds rose up, with American backing, to wrest their rights from the Ba'athist regime. In the Iranian border town where she lived, she witnessed the arrival of a hundred thousand refugees. She volunteered in the refugee school and saw first-hand what happened when the U.S. government…


Sweet Tea with Cardamom

By Teresa Thornhill,

Book cover of Sweet Tea with Cardamom: A Journey Through Iraqi Kurdistan

Everywhere I traveled in Kurdistan, I was invited into homes to have a cup of tea—and so was reminded again and again of this captivating book by an English barrister and linguist who traveled to the region in 1993. Through her work, the suffering of the Kurds, especially women, under Saddam Hussein’s regime comes vividly to life, as does their courage, strong sense of family and place, and indomitable spirit.  

Sweet Tea with Cardamom

By Teresa Thornhill,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Sweet Tea with Cardamom as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.


A History of Iraq

By Charles Tripp,

Book cover of A History of Iraq

If you want a quick overview of Iraqi history with easily digestible political science takes on the country’s problems, this is your book. Tripp’s study of Iraq has been read by countless undergraduate studentsmyself included—grappling with trying to understand the course of events that led the United States to declare war on Iraq twice. The book provides lucid arguments in an easily accessible writing style. As a first introduction to Iraqi history, this book is hard to beat.

A History of Iraq

By Charles Tripp,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A History of Iraq as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

To understand Iraq, Charles Tripp's history is the book to read. Since its first appearance in 2000, it has become a classic in the field of Middle East studies, read and admired by students, soldiers, policymakers and journalists. The book is now updated to include the recent American invasion, the fall and capture of Saddam Hussein and the subsequent descent into civil strife. What is clear is that much that has happened since 2003 was foreshadowed in the account found in this book. Tripp's thesis is that the history of Iraq throughout the twentieth-century has made it what it is…


Iraq, 1900 to 1950

By Stephen Hemsley Longrigg,

Book cover of Iraq, 1900 to 1950: A Political, Social and Economic History

Though published long ago, this book does what it says on the tin: it provides a straightforward narrative of Iraq’s political, social, and economic history in the first half of the twentieth century. It may not be everyone’s cup of tea. Longrigg was an administrator during the British mandate in Iraq and later joined the Iraq Petroleum Company. He was not an unbiased, detached academic analyst, but if you can look past some of his outdated views, you will find an astute observer of Iraqi affairs as they appeared to the British at the time. 

Iraq, 1900 to 1950

By Stephen Hemsley Longrigg,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Iraq, 1900 to 1950 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.


Independent Iraq

By Majid Khadduri,

Book cover of Independent Iraq: A Study in Iraqi Politics from 1932 to 1958

Majid Khadduri is one of very few Iraqi academics to write about Iraq in English. Born in Mosul to a Jewish family, he had a long and successful career as an educator both in Iraq and the United States. He wrote several books on Iraq’s political history, this book being the best and least biased. It provides a clear and lucid narrative from a reasonably detached perspective of Iraq’s political history from the end of the British mandate in 1932 until the 14 July Revolution in 1958, which overthrew the monarchy. 

Independent Iraq

By Majid Khadduri,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Independent Iraq as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.


Britain in Iraq

By Peter Sluglett,

Book cover of Britain in Iraq: Contriving King and Country

The late Peter Sluglett devoted his life to studying Iraq and had a deep knowledge of the country’s history. This book was re-issued in 2007 but was originally published in the mid-1970s. It is based on Sluglett’s doctoral research on the British League of Nations mandate in Iraq. Perhaps this tells to some extent as the book is data-heavy and does not have the most free-flowing narrative style. Nevertheless, it is unsurpassed in terms of insights and analyses of the British period indirectly governing Iraq between 1920 and 1932. If you want to understand British attempts to shape a country to suit its imperial interests, this is the book for you.

Britain in Iraq

By Peter Sluglett,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Britain in Iraq as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

After the end of World War I, international pressures prevented the Allies from implementing direct colonial rule over the former Arab provinces of the Ottoman Empire. Instead, the Allies created a system of mandates for the governance of the Middle East. France was assigned Lebanon and Syria, and Britain was assigned Iraq, Palestine, and Transjordan. First published in 1976, Britain in Iraq has long been recognized as the definitive history of the mandate period, providing a meticulous and engaging account of Britain's political involvement in Iraq as well as rare insights into the motives behind the founding of the Iraqi…


Roadwork

By Sally Sutton, Brian Lovelock (illustrator),

Book cover of Roadwork

A nonfiction book in rhyme for the very young, Roadwork does double duty as a fun read-aloud with plenty of Onomatopoeia (Bump! Whump! Whop!) and an educational book about the road building process. The book takes readers all the way from planning the road and marking it on the map to planting trees, installing signs, and celebrating a job well done. (Toot! Honk! Vroom!) Kids will love the colorful illustrations–especially all the trucks–and even parents might learn a thing or two about how we build our roads. A page of “Machine Facts” towards the back of the book describes each truck or tractor seen throughout the book and gives a quick explanation of what the machines do.

Roadwork

By Sally Sutton, Brian Lovelock (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Roadwork as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Load the dirt. Load the dirt. Scoop and swing and drop. Slam it down into the truck. Bump! Whump! Whop!

There are many big machines and busy people involved in building a road, and this riveting board book follows them every step of the way. From clearing a pathway (screek!) to rolling the tar (squelch!) to sweeping up at the end (swish!), Roadwork is sure to delight young truck-lovers with its rambunctious rhymes and noisy fun.


Calum's Road

By Roger Hutchinson,

Book cover of Calum's Road

It takes real guts to prove all the naysayers wrong, and become a hero.

Raassay is a remote Scottish island, site of the Rona lighthouse, which Calum MacLeod tended full time until 1967 when he was 56, and the lighthouse was semi-automated.  As the only man living in northern Raasay, he had some more time on his hands.

To bring more people to the area, he decided to build a road, nearly two miles long, using just a pick, a shovel, a wheelbarrow, multiple pairs of wellington boots, and his bare hands.  It took him ten years. Today on Calum’s Road or “Rathad Chaluim” (in Gaelic) drivers are in awe of one man’s determination to do what he believed was needed, despite the cost.

Calum's Road

By Roger Hutchinson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Calum's Road as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

'An incredible testament to one man's determination' - The Sunday Herald

Calum MacLeod had lived on the northern point of Raasay since his birth in 1911. He tended the Rona lighthouse at the very tip of his little archipelago, until semi-automation in 1967 reduced his responsibilities. 'So what he decided to do', says his last neighbour, Donald MacLeod, 'was to build a road out of Arnish in his months off. With a road he hoped new generations of people would return to Arnish and all the north end of Raasay'.

And so, at the age of 56, Calum MacLeod, the…


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