In recent years, writer and human rights lawyer Rebecca Hamilton has frequently brought us glimpses into corners of Sudan we might not otherwise see. Via her blog and through articles for some of the most respected media outlets, Hamilton has reported from Darfur IDP camps on the dismal state of services for survivors of sexual violence, covered crackdowns on women and opposition groups in northern Sudan, and reflected on her detainment by the notorious state security services in Khartoum. (And those are just highlights that quickly come to mind.) Most recently, her reporting from southern Sudan took an off-the-beaten-path look at stories surrounding the referendum.
Now Hamilton delves into the complex – and controversial – topic of Darfur advocacy in her new book, Fighting for Darfur: Public Action and the Struggle to Stop Genocide, on shelves February 1. From the website, which also has excerpts and the back story on some of the characters:
As the first genocide of the twenty-first century, Darfur became the test case for what the United States and the international community would do to uphold the mantra of “never again.” This is the story of the individuals who organized protest marches, lobbied government officials, and raised funds in the belief that the outcry they created would force world powers to save the millions still at risk. Hamilton details how advocacy for Darfur was an exuberant, multi-billion dollar effort, and then does what no one has to date: takes us inside policy black-box, and onto the camps of Darfur, to document the actual impact of the citizen outcry. Fast paced and original, Fighting for Darfur weaves a gripping story that both dramatizes our moral dilemma and shows the promise and perils of citizen engagement in a new era of global compassion.
The chronicle is highly anticipated within the community it examines and will undoubtedly spur some interesting, and likely heated, discussions online and along the stops of the book tour.
The D.C. book launch is next Tuesday, Feb. 1 at the New America Foundation, and Open Society Foundation will host the New York City launch on Feb. 8. Throughout the month of February, Hamilton will be in D.C., New York, Chicago, and Florida promoting the book, so check the Fighting for Darfur events page for more details and additional appearances.
A copy of the book is circulating here at Enough, so we’ll be posting reactions in the coming weeks.