The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #92621   Message #1776038
Posted By: Fiona
04-Jul-06 - 06:23 PM
Thread Name: The Wisdom of Yusuf Islam/Cat Stevens
Subject: RE: The Wisdom of Yusuf Islam/Cat Stevens
From Little Hawk,

''Sounds like Salman Rushdie wrote an opportunistic, deliberately provocative book, hoping to garner lots of free publicity, and got a little more than he bargained for, the Ayatollah delivered an opportunistic Fatwa, hoping to stir up the faithful worldwide, and achieved nothing remotely useful thereby, and a clever reporter seized an opportunity of his own to spring a trap on a onetime pop star in order to get a good story, and succeeded tremendously, and Yusuf Islam got caught unawares in a witch's nest not of his own devising and is still having to defend himself many years later over it.

I call that just a sad tale of multiple human frailties playing themselves out in the theatre of the absurd... ''


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Little Hawk, I think this is a reasonable summing up, but what it misses is the public mood.

I doubt if the man on the street gave a damn about Rushdie or had even heard of him. He's not a 'popular' author, but the literary circles all jumped to his defence and it all became very intellectual and arty. I dare say most folks hereabouts would feel the same if it was a musician who had a fatwa declared on them, rather than an author.

Where I believe Yusaf Islam went wrong was to get involved in the dispute in the first place. He used his fame to try to justify an act that horrified the average Muslim on the street