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  The Invisible American Culture   Does America have a culture? I don’t mean “Kulcha,” as in high-flown symphonies and ballet, but culture, small c, a distinctive flavor, that je ne sais quoi that a group of people emanates by virtue of all its shared attitudes and styles. Some say no. America, they say, is […]

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The Widow’s Husband

The Widow’s Husband In 1839, the British marched into Afghanistan, overthrew its king, and occupied Kabul. Three years later, the entire British community tried to flee Afghanistan over the Hindu Kush mountains, but only one man made it. The Widow’s Husband is a historical novel set against the backdrop of this First Anglo-Afghan War. Other novels […]

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West of Kabul, East of New York

  An Afghan American Story   “Growing up bicultural is like straddling a crack in the Earth, especially when the two cultures are as vastly disparate as America and Afghanistan. The memoir is an account of just such a life. My father was an Afghan who was sent to the United States to study in […]

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Previous Engagements

  Selected Previous Engagements    Television appearances Oprah Winfrey Show Bill Moyers, In Conversation with KTLA, Los Angeles KRON, San Francisco Al Jazeera, The Riz Kjhan Show The News Hour with Jim Lehrer Ariana TV Noor TV Radio Shows The Michael Krasny show, KQED The Ronn Owens Show, KGO The Gene Burns Show, KGO World […]

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Lecture Topics

Selected Lecture Topics   World History: an Alternative Story World history as commonly taught in Western schools traces a development from Mesopotamia and Egypt, through Greece and Rome, and then to the Dark Ages, which is followed by the Renaissance, the Enlightenment, the Industrial Revolution and the rise of modern democratic nations. I offer an […]

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Ask Tamim

  Betty H. asks: Why is New York City called The Big Apple?    New York City is called The Big Apple because it sounds so much cooler than Fun City, the dorky nickname used in all the promotional literature put out by the city’s convention and visitor’s bureau prior to the 1970s. In that decade […]

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Nine Underrated Inventions

The Nine Most Underrated Inventions   “Great inventions.” Typically that phrase refers to big ticket items. One thinks of dazzling intellectual breakthroughs:  the telescope, the steam engine, the airplane, the wheel… And those were all tremendous, of course. But often, it’s some mundane little device that changes history. It might be no more than a […]

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