The Translator

The Translator

A Tribesman's Memoir of Darfur

Book - 2008
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If God must break your leg He will at least teach you to limp-so it is said in Africa. This book is my poor limping-a modest account that cannot tell every story that deserves telling. I have seen and heard many things in Darfur that have broken my heart. I bring the stories to you because I know most people want others to have good lives and, when they understand the situation, they will do what they can to bend the world back toward kindness. This is when human beings, I believe, are most admirable. The young life of Daoud Hari-his friends call him David-has been one of bravery and mesmerizing adventure. As a translator and the guide of choice to media, the US Embassy, and the United Nations, Hari became a vital link to the outside world, a living witness to the brutal genocide underway in Darfur. Most of the reporting on the great tragedies of our day has been written by journalists, and after-the-fact. Rarely, in a conflict of this magnitude, has there been an eyewitness voice to the events as they are still happening. Daoud Hari is that voice. The Translator is a suspenseful, harrowing and deeply moving memoir of how one person can make a difference in the world - an on-the-ground account of one of the biggest stories of our time.
Publisher: Toronto : Doubleday Canada, c2008.
ISBN: 9780385666152
Characteristics: xii, 204 pages ;,22 cm.


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May 04, 2020

A gorgeous book by a gorgeous man (gentle, courageous, patient, humorous). Moving and informative. Excellent appendix explaining the land takeover, the role of the Chinese, etc.

Nov 18, 2014

Having been to South Sudan several times I found this book extremely interesting. It is well written and held my attention throughout. Although there were some extremely horrific situations they were tempered by Daoud's indomitable spirit and he often made me smile with his little humorous thoughts/comments. I greatly admire Daoud as well as many of the friends he made during his time as a translator. I pray for peace and healing for his people. I encourage others to read/listen to the story. You will come away wiser for having done so. -- Debra R

Jan 02, 2013

Smooth read, very informative.

May 01, 2012

This book provides background to the horrible situation in Sudan. The translator is kidnapped with a journalist and driver, and eventually escapes to the US. He remains a human being.

Jun 16, 2010

Excellent book! A good way to get to understand the conflict in Sudan and Daoud Hari is an inspiring person.

Oct 09, 2008

avoid that place, poor guy

Jul 07, 2008

In 2003, the Sudanese government began systematically terrorizing, attacking and destroying rural villages in the Darfur region. Witnessing the slaughter of family and friends, Daoud Hari, a young Zaghawa tribesman, escaped across the western border to neighboring Chad. Well-educated by Sudanese standards and fluent in English, Arabic and Zaghawa, Hari then began his selfless work as a translator, sneaking international journalists back across the border into Sudan, all of them risking their lives in order to document the genocidal war in Darfur.

Hari's experiences are told in gentle, simple prose, like that of a favorite storyteller. His story is horrific, heartbreaking and inspiring.

May 27, 2008

Daoud Hari belongs to the Zaghawa tribe from Darfur (Sudan). After his village was destroyed by the Sudan military and rebels he escaped to a refuge camp in Chad. There he put his limited English and fluent Arabic and Zaghawa to work, risking his life to act as a translator for journalists and aid groups from all over the world wanting to interview people still alive in villages in Darfur.
A very thought provoking, very readable, eyewitness account about a disturbing current event.

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