About Keith Kahn-Harris
Keith Kahn-Harris is honorary research fellow at the Centre for Religion and Contemporary Society, Birkbeck College. He is the author (with Ben Gidley) of Turbulent Times: The British Jewish Community Today (Continuum, July 2010). He has written widely on Israel, Jewish affairs and politics. His website is here
Articles by Keith Kahn-Harris
The conflict in Gaza has dominated world headlines since the closing days of 2008. The war there is an exceptional event yet it also contains many elements of the familiar - in part because even at the “best” of times, media coverage of the middle east can be intense. In the new media age this coverage includes featuring and reflecting the intense engagement of people from around the world in the affairs of the region.
Pierre Bayard's book How To Talk About Books You Haven't Read (2008) has received favourable notices from many critics. The title may promise a cynical "how to" guide, but Bayard's essay is in fact a profound meditation on reading, knowledge and memory. It is also a book that generates interesting questions for those concerned with politics and citizenship in a knowledge-saturated world.
A British comedian tells the following story:
"I was in a taxi early on a Sunday and the cab-driver started talking about how homosexuality was immoral. I was fed up with this and so I said I didn't know how useful hard and fast concepts of morality were in discussing this kind of issue. I then elaborated on societies, such as the ancient Greeks or the Zunis, where, far from being subhuman, homosexuality was actually viewed as a higher, more profound form of love, so all our ideas about its degeneracy may actually be bound-up in our own cultural context. The cab driver then said: ‘Well, you can prove anything with facts, can't you?'"