National Book Critics Circle, Nonfiction, 1999
In April of 1994, the government of Rwanda called on everyone in the Hutu majority to kill everyone in the Tutsi minority. Over the next three months, 800,000 Tutsis were murdered in the most unambiguous case of genocide since Hitler's war against the Jews. This haunting work by Philip Gourevitch, staff writer for the New Yorker, is an anatomy of the killings in Rwanda, a vivid history of the genocide's background, and an unforgettable account of what it means to survive in its aftermath.
©1998 Philip Gourevitch; (P)2007 Blackstone Audio Inc.
"A sobering, revealing, and deeply thoughtful chronicle." (Boston Globe)
"[It is the] sobering voice of witness that Gourevitch has vividly captured in his work." (New York Times Book Review)
"The most important book I have read in many years....Gourevitch examines [the genocidal war in Rwanda] with humility, anger, grief and a remarkable level of both political and moral intelligence." (Los Angeles Times)
I have educated myself on the conflict in Rwanda somewhat, but this book opens your eyes even wider.
Good background information, honest, exposes the hypocritical governmental and religious authorities involved. A thinking person can't help but ask, "What would I do in this situation?". Plus there are examples of fundamental good, by individuals who have determined to be governed by a higher moral standard (or you might say a MORAL standard period.) One that reflects simple human decency and responsibility to ones fellowman.
I want to read books that take me to a "place and/or time" I've never been. On the other hand, I love reading about places where I HAVE been.
I had watched the movie "Hotel Rwanda" a few years ago and this audio "fleshed out" that story for me. Very sad that all this killing and violence continues. Many gruesome details, but important for us to know. I've been on an Africa "kick" reading lots of books about different countries of that continent, some fact some fiction. Put this on your list.
The writer extensively reviews the Rwandan Genocide from the colonial history to recent years and to challenges into the future.
The story is not only informative but also poses many philosophical questions and makes you ponder about some very deep ethical issues that cannot be answered with right or wrong.
Because a lot of the places are named in Kinyarwanda, it's hard to listen to the names and then connect them with English letters. It makes me go back and forth between this audio book and hard book and posed some potential problems for me.
We all should be ashamed that we allow these things to happen during our lifetime, and stop the condescending self exaltation of our western 'superiority.'
I had to stop listening afterabout 8 /10 discs because even tho this is a true, historical event, and is still occuring today, I could not keep with the millions and millions and millions of people killed, and tortured and killed. This country has such an extreme willingness to be murdered and either does not want to stop the killigs or cannot stop the killings. This book is about a journalist visiting Rowanda and writing about what he sees and experiences. I could not even catch my breath between the mass murders of millions upon millions of people. I felt totally depressed and hopeless with this book.
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