William R. Polk
Palgrave Macmillan Trade
As I have written in the Foreword, I think that the primary reason for learning about another culture is humane: our world would be a dreary, drab place if we were ignorant of the richness and diversity of the ways of life that have evolved from the endowments of history and geography. Now I want to turn to a second, more urgent, reason: to avoid destructive war and move toward security and peace. So, while I have anchored my account in the past, I now look forward to the future.
“Offers much fascinating and accurate information”--Choice
"A great scholar's brilliant appreciation of Iranian culture and history." -- Dr. Khodadad Farmanfarmaian, former Deputy Prime Minister of Iran
"The great value of Bill Polk's books is that they take a thoughtful, clear-eyed look at America's entanglement in the Middle East. Understanding Iran is the latest addition to the library of Polk's sharp, smart analysis of a region that America doesn't understand well enough. There are scoops in this book about how close the United States has come to war with the Islamic Republic. But more, there is a deep understanding of Iran, its history and its culture. He tells a story that anyone who cares about America and Iran should read."--David Ignatius, columnnst for the Washington Post and author of "The Increment."
"Engrossing and penetrating. A beautifully written vision of the other which we desperately need."--William H. McNeill, former president of the American Historical Association and chairman of the History Department of the University of Chicago.
"Understanding Iran fully lives up to the promise of its title, giving us a thorough yet lively survey of a society that is moving quickly toward becoming the dominant power in the region. He reminds us that as much as Iranians chafe under the yoke of their current leaders, they still have bitter memories of generations of British, Russian and American espionage, invasion and dominance. There are important lessons to be learned from the mistakes of the past, and Polk teases them out of Iran’s long, rich history. In the process, he makes a strong case that it is not just now, but for decades to come that a true understanding of Iran will be essential." --Former ambassador Robert V. Keeley, Five and Ten Press
"Understanding Iran fully lives up to the promise of its title" --Robert V. Keeley, Foreign Service Journal
Everything You Need to Know, From Persia to the Islamic Republic, From Cyrus to Ahmadinejad
William R. Polk