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SLCL’s Westfall Series Presents “Lawrence in Arabia” Historian Scott Anderson

Press Release

Tuesday, May 20, 2014 - 10:00a.m.
The St. Louis County Library Foundation’s ‘Buzz’ Westfall Favorite Author Series is pleased to present veteran war correspondent and historian Scott Anderson for a discussion and signing of his bestselling book “Lawrence in Arabia: War, Deceit, Imperial Folly, and the Making of the Modern Middle East.”
The event will take place at Library Headquarters (1640 S. Lindbergh Blvd.) on Tuesday, June 3 at 7:00 p.m. The program is free and open to the public. Books will be available for purchase at the event from Barnes & Noble.
Nominated for the National Book Critics Circle Award in biography and a New York Times Notable Book, veteran war correspondent Scott Anderson presents a thrilling and revelatory narrative of one of the most epic and consequential periods in 20th Century history–the Arab Revolt and the secret “great game” to control the Middle East.
The Arab Revolt against the Turks in World War I was, in the words of T.E. Lawrence, “a sideshow of a sideshow.” Amidst the slaughter in European trenches, the Western combatants paid scant attention to the Middle Eastern theater. As a result, the conflict was shaped to a remarkable degree by a small handful of adventurers and low-level officers far removed from the corridors of power. At the center of it all was Lawrence. In early 1914 he was an archaeologist excavating ruins in the sands of Syria; by 1917 he was the most romantic figure of World War I, battling both the enemy and his own government to bring about the vision he had for the Arab people.
Based on years of intensive primary document research, “Lawrence in Arabia” definitively overturns received wisdom on how the modern Middle East was formed.  Sweeping in its action, keen in its portraiture, acid in its condemnation of the destruction wrought by European colonial plots, this is a book that brilliantly captures the way in which the folly of the past creates the anguish of the present.
As a war correspondent, Scott Anderson has reported from Lebanon, Israel, Egypt, Northern Ireland, Chechnya, Sudan, Bosnia, El Salvador and many other strife-torn countries. A frequent contributor to the New York Times Magazine, his work has also appeared in Vanity Fair, Esquire, Harper’s and Outside. He is the author of novels “Moonlight Hotel” and “Triage.”
The program with Scott Anderson is a St. Louis County Library ‘Buzz’ Westfall Favorite Author Series presentation. The Westfall series features authors of politics, current issues, history, and sports. The series is co-sponsored by AJ.P. Realty; McMahon Berger; Brown Smith Wallace LLC; Royal Banks of Missouri; St. Louis Business Journal; Midwest Library Service; The Booksource; S.M. Wilson & Co.; and Stifel, Nicolaus.