Open main menu

UnbalancedEdit

Bernard Lewis was a hugely divisive and controversial person, especially after the spectacular failure of the 2003 Iraq war (which he was a supporter of...until it was an obvious failure). Not many would get that from this article, though!

His notorious "Alleged nuclear threat from Iran" from 2006 was widely mocked...when it turned out to be.....nothing.

The article now looks as if nothing has happened in the Middle East these last 15 years..but it has. Trying to censor out Hamid Dabashi, (a professor at Columbia University and a heck of a lot more notable than a lot of the people cited in the article) will not hide Bernard Lewis political failings. Huldra (talk) 23:23, 4 June 2018 (UTC)

Also, WP:OWN is relevant. nableezy - 23:31, 4 June 2018 (UTC)

Opinion articles are not really suitable for leads. If you must, add Dabashi in some section about criticism. Also you removed a direct quote from Lewis without explanation.--יניב הורון (talk) 23:32, 4 June 2018 (UTC)
That direct quote is way, way too long, and, more importantly, strongly mischaracterised Lewis views of the people he studied. (At least according to the same people!) According to Hamid Dabashi: "What sort of a person would spend a lifetime studying people he loathes?" So according to him, Lewis loathes his subject....not easy to see that in the present article, Huldra (talk) 23:48, 4 June 2018 (UTC)
Leads should summarize an article, and that summary would include criticism of the subject. nableezy - 23:35, 4 June 2018 (UTC)
There no particular reason to showcase Hamid Dabashi's opinion in the lead - particularly not from an opinion piece. We have much higher quality sources for Lewis - actual journalism profiles in leading newspapers, and academic level coverage.Icewhiz (talk) 04:46, 5 June 2018 (UTC)
Theres no particular reason for any one thing to be anywhere. However the lead has to contain an adequate summary of the article, including criticism of Lewis. nableezy - 05:08, 5 June 2018 (UTC)
We already have a whole paragraph in the lede devoted to his debates with Said and criticism from Said - which is more than enough.Icewhiz (talk) 05:11, 5 June 2018 (UTC)
We must be reading different articles. There is one sentence about Said, and nothing about criticism of Lewis' views on the Arabs or the Middle East, whereas it includes the bizarre claim that Lewis is " generally regarded as the dean of Middle East scholars" sourced to video by Jay Nordlinger, who as best I can tell has no business making such a claim let alone being quoted (or plagiarized as there are no quotations around the word-for-word copy) in the opening of an encyclopedia article. nableezy - 05:20, 5 June 2018 (UTC)
That said I dont see the need for this particular quote over any other. But criticism of the views he espoused belongs in both the article and the lead. And the fawning tone taken in portions needs to be dropped down a few notches. nableezy - 05:23, 5 June 2018 (UTC)
I will remind you that BLP policy, per WP:BDP, applies to this article and the talk page. If at all, our lede (and body) gives too much space to Said and criticism - looking at the nytimes obit, we can see that we are over critical - the nytimes has in a long obit a paragraph and a half of criticism, and leads off with "Bernard Lewis, an eminent historian of Islam who traced the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, to a declining Islamic civilization, a controversial view that influenced world opinion and helped shape American foreign policy under President George W. Bush" and continuing with "Few outsiders and no academics had more influence with the Bush administration on Middle Eastern affairs than Mr. Lewis".Icewhiz (talk) 13:22, 5 June 2018 (UTC)
lol, sure thing buddy, nothing I said violates any part of that policy, and besides he's been dead and confirmed dead, so no, per WP:BDP it does not apply here. Do you even read what you try to threaten people with? He is confirmed dead, and nothing written above is contentious or questionable material about the dead that has implications for their living relatives and friends, such as in the case of a possible suicide or a particularly gruesome crime so kindly take your threats elsewhere as I actually do read the policies instead of just waving them around. nableezy - 17:11, 5 June 2018 (UTC)
And well done completely ignoring the points made, I see you dont have a response to them. Thanks. nableezy - 17:14, 5 June 2018 (UTC)
  • Why was Dabashi's view removed from the article? It's not even seen in the body, or I'm making a mistake?--Mhhossein talk 14:09, 5 June 2018 (UTC)
Good question, and you are not wrong. Presently only those who say that Lewis "loves it [the Arab world]" is allowed in the article. And at greeeeeeeeeeeeeeat length. Representatives from that world (or the Iranian world), who actually say that Lewis loathed them...are apparently not allowed. At present, AFAIK, there isn't a single Muslim voice in the article, in spite of the fact that the Muslim world were the object of Lewis's "love". We can't allow the object to have a say, can we? (Personally, I'm just damn glad I have never been the object of such "love" as that Lewis showed the Muslim world.....) Huldra (talk) 20:20, 5 June 2018 (UTC)

dean of the middle eastEdit

Im aware that another source was added, that still does not seem like something that a clinical psychologist is qualified to judge. nableezy - 16:56, 6 June 2018 (UTC)

It is from a book published by an academic press. Take it to RSN if you doubt its reliability, and there are no special qualifications required to call someone 'the dean of mid-east scholars'. It may be an incorrect evaluation, but it is indisputable that he has been called that.Firkin Flying Fox (talk) 20:49, 6 June 2018 (UTC)
He has been called that, whether or not being called that by a clinical psychologist merits being included in an encyclopedia article is what I am disputing. nableezy - 21:33, 6 June 2018 (UTC)
Perhaps that is what you are disputing now, having moved the goal posts. But we are not idiots, and we can all read the edit history for this article - when you first removed this material, you did not claim "undue" or "no encyclopedic value", you claimed "unreliable source for such a sweeping claim", and when I subsequently provided a better source, you again did not claim "undue" or "not encyclopedic", but rather, again, "still an unreliable source for the claim". So, please make up your mind as to what you actually want to claim. That would stop wasting people's valuable time addressing your frivolous objection (which you now disclaim) at RSN. Firkin Flying Fox (talk) 21:48, 6 June 2018 (UTC)
Youre quite right, I made a mistake. I mistakenly believed your edit summary here that you had undone my edit. I noticed after that it was a new source, and then I came here with my objection to using this clinical psychologist as a qualified expert on the field of Orientalists. Of course I wont make the mistake to believe you again, no worries. nableezy - 22:15, 6 June 2018 (UTC)
What a pathetic little lie. I followed up that edit less than a minute later with another edit whose edit summary read "better source", hours before your edit. You simply blindly revert everything I do, and this time got caught. Firkin Flying Fox (talk) 02:16, 7 June 2018 (UTC)
Except that edit didnt add a source, it added a single character, so likewise, a dishonest edit summary. Youre really taking advantage of all the time you have here arent you. Looking forward to the per WP:BAN edits that will be coming. nableezy - 20:57, 7 June 2018 (UTC)

I would get rid of this comment simply for the archaic use of the word "dean". I've worked most of my career in higher education and use/hear it regularly, but not in this manner. Famousdog (woof)(grrr) 10:40, 8 June 2018 (UTC)

Unbalanced IIEdit

OK, presently the following has been edit warred out of the article:

"Lewis has been called the "chief ideologue of post-9/11 politics of hate towards Islam and Muslims".[1]

Hamid Dabashi, writing on 28 May 2018, in an article subtitled "On Bernard Lewis and 'his extraordinary capacity for getting everything wrong'", asked: "Just imagine: What sort of a person would spend a lifetime studying people he loathes? It is quite a bizarre proposition. But there you have it: the late Bernard Lewis did precisely that." He further wrote:

Afghanistan and Iraq are in ruins today, millions of Arabs and Muslims have been murdered, scarred for life, subjected to the indignity of military occupation and refugee camps, in no small measure because of the systemic maligning of Muslims Lewis advanced in his books and articles, and with them informed generations of imperial officers.[1]

"


In addition to the above, we also have, eg:


I would like to include both of the above writers (both obviously WP:RS) in the article. Could we possibly fight the text out here, instead of edit warring? Suggestions? Huldra (talk) 22:40, 6 June 2018 (UTC)

WP:UNDUE. Find a better source than an opinion piece by a partisan in AJ.Icewhiz (talk) 06:49, 7 June 2018 (UTC)
I have called you out on your double standard before, Icewhiz, ...and apparently I have to do so again. There already is opinion pieces in the article, like the one by his close companion Fouad Ajami. Strange you never have found that WP:UNDUE, isn't it? Huldra (talk) 21:08, 7 June 2018 (UTC)
Opinion pieces are fine sources for the view of the author. NPOV requires all significant published views be included. You cannot use UNDUE as a bludgeon to keep significant views from the article. That is an abuse of the policy. Huldra, make your edit and if it is reverted we can take it NPOV/N and or open an RFC. nableezy - 21:37, 7 June 2018 (UTC)
Certainly, they represent the views of the author. Dabashi's views on Lewis are insignificant, as more significant people have commented on Lewis, and said commentary has been even covered in a secondary manner.Icewhiz (talk) 05:10, 8 June 2018 (UTC)
Thank heavens we have you around, Icewhiz, to tell us what is "significant" and "insignificant". Otherwise how would we ever cope? Famousdog (woof)(grrr) 10:23, 8 June 2018 (UTC)
Please refrain from cynical comments or personal attacks against other users, which adds nothing to the discussion. WP:Civility--יניב הורון (Yaniv) (talk) 15:52, 8 June 2018 (UTC)

The idea that significance is determined by how "significant" a Wikipedia editor deems the author is fallacious. Im sorry Icewhiz, but you dont get to make rulings like that. Huldra, make the edit. If it is reverted we can go to NPOV/N. If people are filibustering then we just need to get the wider community involved, as the policies here are clear and I trust given wider input the cynical arguments advanced to keep out well sourced material will be soundly rejected. nableezy - 15:57, 8 June 2018 (UTC)

I did not make a ruling, as such power has not been vested in my editorial self, I merely proffered my opinion as to why inclusion of insignificant opinion piece in AJ was undue. You do have consensus for inclusion of this UNDUE oped.Icewhiz (talk) 18:57, 8 June 2018 (UTC)
Like I said, @Huldra:, make the edit and if it is reverted on bogus grounds like what has been offered we can open an RFC and see what the wider community thinks about such tactics. nableezy - 19:51, 8 June 2018 (UTC)
Instead of "critical voices" why not the author's name and their qualifications(professor of Iranian studies)? --Kansas Bear (talk) 23:38, 8 June 2018 (UTC)
Return to "Bernard Lewis" page.