Thanks to the cooperation of the National Book Critics Circle (NBCC) and The School of Writing at The New School, as well as the tireless efforts of our students and faculty, we are able to provide interviews with each of the NBCC Awards Finalists for the publishing year 2013.
Anna Fridlis, on behalf of the School of Writing at The New School and the NBCC, met with Scott Anderson to discuss Lawrence in Arabia: War, Deceit, Imperial Folly and the Making of the Modern Middle East (Doubleday). Lawrence in Arabia is among the final five selections, in the category of Biography, for the 2013 NBCC awards.
From the publisher: The Arab Revolt against the Turks in World War One was, in the words of T.E. Lawrence, "a sideshow of a sideshow." Amidst the slaughter in European trenches, the Western combatants paid scant attention to the Middle Eastern theater. As a result, the conflict was shaped to a remarkable degree by a small handful of adventurers and low-level officers far removed from the corridors of power. Based on years of intensive primary document research, LAWRENCE IN ARABIA definitively overturns received wisdom on how the modern Middle East was formed. Sweeping in its action, keen in its portraiture, acid in its condemnation of the destruction wrought by European colonial plots, this is a book that brilliantly captures the way in which the folly of the past creates the anguish of the present.
Scott Anderson is a veteran war correspondent, a contributing writer for the New York Times Magazine, whose work also appears in Vanity Fair, Esquire, Harper's, Outside and many other publications. Over the years he has reported from Beirut, Northern Ireland, Chechnya, Israel, Sudan, Sarajevo, El Salvador and many other war-torn countries. He is the author of the critically-acclaimed novel Triage, as well as the nonfiction book The Man Who Tried to Save the World, and, with his brother Jon Lee Anderson War Zones.
Anna Fridlis is an MFA student in nonfiction at the New School, where she is currently working on her thesis about her family's immigration to the United States in the mid-'90s. She lives in Queens, New York.