Kenwood Press


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World Affairs Council speaker


Quail Inn Restaurant

Friday September 2010 - 12:00pm to

On Sept. 24, the World Affairs Council of Sonoma County presents novelist Anastasia Hobbet, the author of Small Kingdoms: A Personal Look at Life Behind Closed Doors in the Arabian Gulf. This event will take place at noon at the Quail Inn, 7025 Oakmont Dr.

Ms. Hobbet lived in Kuwait for five years between the two Gulf wars, when Saddam Hussein was still in power and threatening a second invasion of this small, oil-rich desert nation. Hobbet will describe this experience, which left her impressed by Arab culture and history and troubled by the social inequities of the region, particularly the frequent abuse of Third World migrant workers who have few rights though they often far outnumber the natives who employ them.

Home again after 9/11, she found media coverage of the Middle East superficial and sensationalistic, which inspired her to write her second novel, Small Kingdoms, a book The New York Times called “captivating.” Published this year, the 20th anniversary of the first Gulf War, set in Kuwait and drawing on Hobbet’s interaction with people at all levels of society, it tells the story of an abused housemaid and the handful of brave souls from widely-varied backgrounds who band together to help her.

Ms. Hobbet has studied language and culture of the Islamic world, is a former freelance journalist, and works as a writer and editor.

Reservations are required by Sept. 17. Mail check to WACSC, P. O. Box 1433, Santa Rosa, CA 95402, $20/member; $25/non-member.


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