Book Review: Reconciliation: Islam, Democracy, and the West by Benazir Bhutto

Benazir Bhutto was Pakistan`s first (and so far only) female Prime Minister. She served two terms and worked hard to change and develop the country, with emphasis on education, especially for girls. I have yet to read her autobiography (it is in my To Be Read pile), however you do get some insight to her thoughts in this book.

When I first picked it up I thought it was an autobiography however, while she does write about her political background and personal life, it is more to do with the relationship between Islam, democracy and Western ideologies. For someone coming from a background in politics this was a pleasant surprise.

Bhutto first analyzes the debate within Islam, the one between moderation and extremism, then she delves into looking at the relationship between Islam and democracy, two things which some scholars and politicians (who may or may not know anything about Islam) say are incompatible. Bhutto, looks at how democracy played out in the Muslim countries of the world (countries which have Islam as the dominate religion, i.e. the Middle East, Iran, Indonesia and Comoros). After this broad look at the relationship, she concentrates on Pakistan. I found this to be very interesting, in part because I know very little about Pakistan and even less about its political history. As you know by now, I love books that teach me something. Bhutto ends this book by looking at the Clash of Civilizations debate, which is always brought up in political science classes (especially when looking at the Middle East and the West) and so I could use my personal knowledge as background to what she wrote.

 If you enjoy political based books than I think this is something you would enjoy. I understand that these types of books are not for everyone but what I hope to accomplish through these book reviews is introduce you to some not so commonly read books. While I have read the Hunger Games and the Divergent series and all the other mainstream books, I like to venture off that path and discover other reads. I hope that I have thus far, provided a unique list of books for you to explore. If you have read this book or admire Benazir Bhutto, please leave a comment down below, I would love to hear what you think. Or of course, you can email me if you don`t feel comfortable speaking about your political views in public or wish to have a debate. I enjoy debating politics.

Happy Reading!

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