Over the past decade and a half, the Democratic Republic of Congo has been at the center of the deadliest series of conflicts since the Second World War, and now hosts the largest United Nations peacekeeping mission in the world. In The Democratic Republic of Congo, acclaimed journalist Michael Deibert paints a compelling picture of a nation in flux, inching towards peace but solidifying into what may prove to be another era of authoritarian rule, this time under its enigmatic president, Joseph Kabila.
Featuring a wealth of remarkable on-the-ground reportage and first-hand interviews, the book travels from war-torn villages in the country's east to the chaotic, pulsing capital of Kinshasa in order to bring us the voices of the Congolese - from impoverished gold prospectors and market women to government officials - as it explores the complicated political, ethnic and social geography of this tattered land. A must-read for anyone interested in contemporary Africa, The Democratic Republic of Congo sheds new light on this sprawling and often misunderstood country that has become iconic both for its great potential and dashed hopes.
About this author
Michael Deibert is the author of Democratic Republic of Congo: Between Hope and Despair, published in cooperation with the Royal African Society, the International African Institute and the World Peace Foundation. His first book, Notes from the Last Testament: The Struggle for Haiti (Seven Stories Press, 2005), was praised by The Miami Herald as "a powerfully documented exposé" and by the San Antonio Express-News as "a compelling mix of reportage, memoir and social criticism," and has since become required reading for diplomats and others seeking to understand that country's complex 1994-2004 era.
Michael's writing has appeared in The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, The Guardian, The Miami Herald, Le Monde diplomatique, Folha de São Paulo, World Policy Journal, and The Huffington Post, among other venues. He has been a featured commentator on international affairs on the BBC, Al Jazeera, Channel 4, National Public Radio, WNYC New York Public Radio, and KPFK Pacifica Radio.
In 2012, he was awarded a grant from the International Peace Research Association, and in 2008 he was selected as a ﬁnalist for the Kurt Schork Award in International Journalism, sponsored by the Institute for War and Peace Reporting, both in recognition of his work in the Democratic Republic of Congo.