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    In North Africa quite a few British captives converted to Islam and some married local women.

    I wonder why they converted to Islam? The white slave trade to north Africa is pretty well documented and includes accounts of how conversion was achieved. Not exactly voluntary. "White Gold", an account of one such slave, was in the best seller list just this year!

    It appears to me that by deliberately avoiding certain facts, the writer might maintain a certain narrative that supports her politics. Her history doesn't seem to be that meticulous, at least based upon this short extract.



    Have you switched off hypertext? I put italics arounds the first phrase to indicate it was a quote but they have disappeared.

    John Barr

    The appeal the Arab cause for educated westerners like Colley or Robert Fisk hes been explained thus: "They sought not the noble savage, but the savage noble". The brutality of an Arab prince towards his captives (or women) is justified by citing non-western "authenticity". Hence the neverending search for root causes. Excellent article on this topic by Keith Windschuttle here:

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