Daily Archives: July 4, 2011

As part of the FT’s guide to the best books to read over the coming months, I contributed the following: 

On The State of Egypt: What Caused the Revolution, by Alaa Al Aswany, Canongate, RRP£9.99, 208 pages

Al Aswany, an acclaimed novelist, is also a prolific journalist (and a dentist). In the years preceding the Egyptian revolution, he was a fierce critic of the Mubarak regime. This collection of his newspaper columns focuses on Al Aswany’s characteristic concerns – corruption, illiberal fundamentalism, autocracy, torture and the mistreatment of women. It is the authentic voice of Egyptian liberalism. Read more

Good luck to Yingluck, she is going to need it. The electoral victory of Thailand’s Pheu Thai party, led by Yingluck Shinawatra, could bring to an end a turbulent phase in Thai politics. If the Thai establishment and the Bangkok middle-classes accept the opposition’s victory, then the country’s first female prime minister might be able to break the cycle of coups, riots and instability that has plagued Thailand for the first five years. Read more