In this profoundly affecting memoir from the internationally renowned author of The Caged Virgin: An Emancipation Proclamation for Women and Islam, Ayaan Hirsi Ali tells her astonishing life story, from her traditional Muslim childhood in Somalia to her intellectual awakening in the Netherlands, to her life under armed guard in the West.
Ayaan Hirsi Ali is one of today's most admired and controversial political figures. She burst into international headlines following the murder of Theo van Gogh by an Islamist who threatened she would be next. An international bestseller, Infidel shows the coming of age of this elegant, distinguished - and sometimes reviled - political superstar and champion of free speech. Raised in a strict Muslim family and extended clan, Hirsi Ali survived civil war, female circumcision, brutal beatings, an adolescence as a devout believer, the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood, and life in four countries under dictatorships. She escaped from a forced marriage and sought asylum in the Netherlands, where she fought for the rights of Muslim women and the reform of Islam, earning her the enmity of reactionary Islamists and craven politicians. Under constant threat, she refuses to be silenced.
Ultimately a celebration of triumph over adversity, Hirsi Ali's story tells how a bright, curious, dutiful little girl evolves into a pioneering freedom fighter. As Western governments struggle to balance democratic ideals with religious pressures, no other book could be more timely, or more significant.