Patrick Seale has died from a brain tumor. While he was on his death bed, his ex, Rana Qabbani, was tackily badmouthing him on Twitter over inheritence issue.
Seale belong to a generation when Western correspondents in the Middle East were among the best graduates of Middle East studies centers in Western universities (outside the US, of course – we don’t believe in expertise here in the US). Seale studied aat St. Anthony’s college at Oxford and was a student of Albert Hourani, who wanted him to become a historian. (The father of Seale was an Arabist by the way). Hourani thought very highly of Seale and wanted him to become a historian. The young Seale published his first book, the Struggle for Syria, fresh out school. It was for years one of the best book (classics really) on the Middle East. I do believe that the book inspired many people to study Syrian history and certainly inspired Philip Khoury in his work on modern Syria. [No public library in Ontario has a copy, and used copies online start from circa $150 – TS] Continue reading