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We Wish to Inform You That Tomorrow We Will Be Killed With Our Families Paperback – 10 Mar 2000

4.7 out of 5 stars 42 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Picador; Reprints edition (10 Mar. 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0330371215
  • ISBN-13: 978-0330371216
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 2.4 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 24,085 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Amazon Review

"Hutus kill Tutsis, then Tutsis kill Hutus--if that's really all there is to it, then no wonder we can't be bothered with it," Philip Gourevitch writes, imagining the response of somebody in a country far from the ethnic strife and mass killings of Rwanda. But the situation is not so simple, and in this complex and wrenching book, he explains why the Rwandan genocide should not be written off as just another tribal dispute.

The "stories" in this book's subtitle are both the author's, as he repeatedly visits this tiny country in an attempt to make sense of what has happened, and those of the people he interviews. These include a Tutsi doctor who has seen much of her family killed over decades of Tutsi oppression, a Schindleresque hotel manager who hid hundreds of refugees from certain death, and a Rwandan bishop who has been accused of supporting the slaughter of Tutsi schoolchildren, and can only answer these charges by saying, "What could I do?" Gourevitch, a staff writer for the New Yorker, describes Rwanda's history with remarkable clarity and documents the experience of tragedy with a sober grace. The reader will ask along with the author: Why does this happen? And why don't we bother to stop it? --Maria Dolan, Amazon.com --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

"[It is the] sobering voice of witness that Gourevitch has vividly captured in his work."―Wole Soyinka, " The New York Times Book Review" "[Gourevitch] has the mind of a scholar along with the observative capacity of a good novelist, and he writes like an angel. This volume establishes him as the peer of Michael Herr, Ryszard Kapuscinski, and Tobias Wolff. I think there is no limit to what we may expect from him."―Robert Stone "A sobering, revealing, and deeply thoughtful chronicle."―"The Boston Globe" "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."―Susie Linfield, " Los Angeles Times" "Shocking and important . . . clear and balanced . . . the voice in this book is meticulous and humane."--Michael Pearson, "The Atlanta Journal-Constitution" "Astonishing . . . [Gourevitch] is masterful at pl

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on 1 July 2001
Format: Paperback
...This book was written by a journalist and does not claim to be an academic history of Rwanda during the genocide. It's concerned more with the reasons individual people did what they did rather than a clinical reporting of facts. Its account of the complete failure of the International community to respond in an even partially adequate fashion coupled with its insights into the minds of the Rwandan people - both Hutu and Tutsi - before and after the genocide make it an absolute must read for anyone who really wants to know what happened in Central Africa over the past 10 years. That Philip Gourevitch is also a brilliant writer is just one more reason to buy this book.
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Format: Paperback
This book is extremely powerful. I came to it after a personal recomendation and after seeing the equally powerful Hotel Rwanda. Although not ignorant of the genocide in central Africa, it had nestled in the back of my mind, along with other disasters, atrocities and tragedies across the 15 years I have been a sentient observer of these things.
I think it is vital that people understand what happened in Rwanda. I think it is important that people realise the capacity of man to bring devestation and horror to fellow man. But perhaps most shockingly people in the West should realise just how callously the foreign policy of their countries is carried out. The Realpolitik of genocide, with Chinese trade, French support for the Francophonie (dead Tutsis don't speak English), US unwillingness to risk another Somalia and the stalling and prevarication of the UN all add to the sheer anger and frustration that one feels when reading about this.
A must read.
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Format: Hardcover
An excellent history of Rwanda's 1994 genocide told by the author, a journalist for the "New Yorker" magazine, but including a large number of personal accounts. If a book about this horrible salughter doesn't make you feel ashamed then it shouldn't be published. This one works, brilliantly. It is also more up to date than other books on the Rwanda crisis in that it includes descriptions of the Rwandan Patriotric Army's forcible dissolution of the refugee camps in Zaire in 1996. This is a period which supporters of the RPA tend to have problems with. Gourevitch is certainly one of those supporters but he tackles the issue head on. The most haunting passages of this book, which live in the memory, are the personal recollections of loss and survival in the genocide. Having spoken to many survivors myself I know how difficult it is to retell those awful stories without destroying their immediacy and horror, but Gourevitch manages this perfectly. I would urge anyone who is thinking of reading this book to do so, but would encourage them to look at Fergal Keane's masterpiece, "Season as Blood" as well. For the full tragedy, fear and anger, Keane is the better guide.
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Format: Paperback
This is a masterpiece. For developing an understanding of the problems in Rwanda, I could not recommend it enough. If you have any interest in this subject, you should buy this book. I have not read many books that are this informative at the same time as being a page-turner.
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By A Customer on 1 May 2003
Format: Paperback
Simply a powerful work. Investigative journalism at its highest. Have worked in the human rights field for some time and thought that I had read and seen it all. This book simply took hold of me and opened my eyes to the minutiae of the genocide in Rwanda. For those who believe that there is no need for a strong UN, please read this book and understand the failings of the western political world.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Horrifying and immediate, this book deeply affected me on first reading. Gourevitch is partisan, admittedly, but then again most informed sources do seem to agree that a genocide took place in Rwanda and that would probably make most observers fairly partisan.
I must say that I found this book more affecting than Keane's, but it may well be that I read this first and it had more impact on me. Gourevitch' skill as a writer is mesmerising - I often felt I was there, whether hiding in a church, or talking to a "pygmy" in a bar, or sitting on some survivor's veranda - everything is immediate, compelling, and vivid.
The final situation, with the refugee camps and the new government, was fascinating, and an insight into a moral minefield in the aftermath of Rwanda's murderous disaster. This book haunted me for a long time after I had finished it.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book on a whim because I was using university module reading lists as a guide to new books to buy. It made me cry and made me feel exasperated and disappointed in the behaviour of some of the nations that should have helped. It is a tragic story, well told.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A really amazing read. I was recommended it and have since bought it for two friends. If you are interested in the Rwandan genocide, this book is an excellent place to start. It contains a high level of factual material, but this is presented in such an interesting and gripping way that you will find it hard to put down. It is more readable than most thrillers and will give you a thorough insight into an event that the West tends to ignore.
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