Shadows of the Pomegranate Tree – Islam Quintet I

Published by Verso, 1993

The first book in the five volume series of historical novels, The Islam Quintet

“Tariq Ali tells us the story of the aftermath of the fall of Granada by narrating a family sage of those who tried to survive after the collapse of their world. Particularly deft at evoking what life must have been like for those doomed inhabitants, besieged on all sides by intolerant Christendom. This is a novel that have something to say, and says it well.”—Guardian

“Tariq Ali captures the humanity and splendour of Muslim Spain … an enthralling story, unravelled with thrift and verve. Shadows of the Pomegranate Tree is quizzical as well as honest, informative as well as enjoyable, real history as well as fiction … a book to be relished and devoured.”—Independent

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From the archive

  • Tariq Ali takes on “Any Questions?” on BBC Radio 4

    November 5, 2010

    Tariq Ali joined Jonathan Dimbleby in Leeds as a panellist on BBC Radio 4‘s “Any Questions?” show, with journalist Peter Hitchens, Sayeeda Warsi, Chairman of the Conservative Party and Jack Dromey MP. The panel answered topical questions including those on housing and civil liberties.

    Visit the BBC Radio 4 website to listen to “Any Questions?” in full.

  • Tariq Ali’s speech at the National Demonstration for Gaza on 8th August, London.

    August 13, 2014

    Here is a video of Tariq Ali’s speech at the largest UK demonstration for Gaza on 8th August, London.

  • ‘The Colour Khaki’

    January 1, 2003

    ‘The Colour Khaki’ by Tariq Ali for New Left Review, Jan-Feb 2003

    Now each day is fair and balmy,

    Everywhere you look, the army.

    Ustad Daman (1959)

    On 19 September 2001, General Pervaiz Musharraf went on TV to inform the people of Pakistan that their country would be standing shoulder to shoulder with the United States in its bombardment of Afghanistan. Visibly pale, blinking and sweating, he looked like a man who had just signed his own death warrant. The installation of the Taliban regime in Kabul had been the Pakistan Army’s only foreign-policy success. In 1978, the US had famously turned to the country’s military dictator General Zia-ul-Haq when it needed a proxy to manage its jihad against the radical pro-Soviet regime in Afghanistan. In what followed, the Pakistan Inter-Services Intelligence became an army within an army,  …

  • Tariq Ali’s speech at the National Demonstration for Gaza on 8th August, London.

    August 13, 2014

    Here is a video of Tariq Ali’s speech at the largest UK demonstration for Gaza on 8th August, London.

  • ‘Solidarity with Lebanon and Palestine’

    August 3, 2006

    ‘Solidarity with Lebanon and Palestine’ with Tariq Ali among the signatories, August 3, 2006

    The US-backed Israeli assault on Lebanon has left the country numb, smoldering and angry. The massacre in Qana and the loss of life is not simply “disproportionate.” It is, according to existing international laws, a war crime.

    The deliberate and systematic destruction of Lebanon’s social infrastructure by the Israeli air force was also a war crime, designed to reduce that country to the status of an Israeli-US protectorate.

    The attempt has backfired, as people all over the world watch aghast. In Lebanon itself, 87 percent of the population now support Hezbollah’s resistance, including 80 percent of Christian and Druze and 89 percent of Sunni Muslims, while 8 percent believe the US supports Lebanon.

    But these actions will not be tried by any court set up by  …