22 de noviembre de 2009

Johnson-Davies (I)

This was 1938: Great Orientalists like Nicholson and Arberry were still around. Many of them, however, the young man was soon to notice, had no practical interest in the Arab world at all; they couldn't really speak Arabic, knew nothing about Arab life and sustained only the most detached fascination with classical Islam, Sufism and the old canon.

"I suppose I was something of a novelty in those days; an Orientalist who actually spoke Arabic," he laughs.
---Amina Elbendary y Youssef Rakha, "Denys Johnson-Davies: Of friends and letters", Al-Ahram Weekly, 571 (2002).

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