I have a new essay with the Boston Review, about suffering, compassion and foreign journalism (and other narratives) of Africa. I hope you'll read it. But here's a cribsheet:
- Being the object of compassion is not the same thing as being the subject of a story.
- We've been telling the same story since we first got to Africa. Don't you think things have probably changed since then? Shouldn't our stories?
- In the 20th century -- the twentieth century-- New Yorkers thought it was cool to put a Congolese man on display in the Bronx Zoo's Monkey House. #wtf
- The paradoxical consequences of the "rape frame" for stories from DR-Congo
- Why Jeff Gettleman writes what he does.
- Plus more. (Bullet points are the writer's trailer.)
I hope you'll read it. I'll be thrilled if you argue with me (but only if you read the thing first). And if all this #narrativefail analysis gets you down, come back tomorrow for my roundup of work by foreign journalists I've loved, and what I loved about it. And bring your own favorites, too.