“I believe the successes you have achieved is the criteria by which we [sic] can know ourselves and worldly evaluate them,” states Abdulelah Khaled Allam in his autobiographical work To Whom I Care: Book 3. Accordingly, Allam briefly describes many of his successes (and some failures) during his life as a student and architect. From these, he distills life lessons such as “do not hurt the feelings of others,” and “the simple right thing may lead to mistakes and big danger.”
Before addressing his experiences, Allam provides comments on the Arabic/Jewish conflict, the best way to read the Koran (one that allows for understanding, rather than rote memorization), and on how man’s relationship to God is part of what defines him, for, Allam stresses, “if a human being forgets God, he/she will forget himself.”
He also touches on his eight years as an undergraduate, his receipt of a master’s degree in project management, and a doctorate in business administration. His description of his work experience is piecemeal and mostly anecdotal, but he apparently worked some time as a building inspector, an architectural consultant, and a project manager. In his “practical life,” he “participated in building” three mosques, a “house for soldiers protecting the country,” and “the houses of a prince and a king.” It’s unclear where these were located.
Allam’s writing is full of repeated catch phrases like “positivity is their umbrella” and “I am out of the line.” His sentences are often difficult to decipher (“Not helping people, as well as adhering to the professionalism of the system, might be of illegal purpose”) and he sometimes omits details crucial to the narrative’s cogency. For instance, he writes about a construction crane involved in an accident, but doesn’t clearly state the time and place or the name of the engineer involved.
Although Allam’s book could potentially deliver a fascinating peek into work in the Arab world, it requires rewriting to realize this possibility.
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